PetroChina’s (PTR.NYSE, 0857.HKG, 601857.SHA) first quarter profits fell 4.9% with net income falling to US$5.48 billion, Bloomberg reported, citing the company’s earnings statement. Analysts attributed the oil and gas producer’s eroded earnings to decreasing oil prices. The realized price of crude declined 2.9% to US$100.06 a barrel this quarter. But with Xi Jinping planning to let market forces dictate petroleum prices, retail natural gas prices, which, up to now, had been set at a ceiling, should be allowed to rise, improving PetroChina’s margins. The company’s shares fell 0.45% in trading in Hong Kong early today.
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