"HOUSTON — Exxon Mobil, the largest American oil company, reported a 53 percent increase in its fourth-quarter profit on Monday, helped by an improving world economy that has increased energy demand and crude prices.
It was the strongest quarterly profit in more than two years, reflecting the strong recovery in oil markets. They soared in 2007 and 2008, collapsed in 2009, and returned to loftier heights by the end of 2010.
'It’s a home run,' said Fadel Gheit, managing director for oil and gas research at Oppenheimer & Company. 'It’s a big positive earnings surprise on strong operating results across all business segments underpinned by strong production growth, higher oil and gas prices and improved margins.'"