Don't Overlook Exxon Mobil

| About: Exxon Mobil (XOM)

While thinking of the name Exxon Mobil (NYSE: XOM), you'd surely end up having thoughts about stock-lowering calamities. After all, when a major player in the oil-and-gas industry unintentionally causes nature-damaging concerns, one trend usually follows - investors hastily sell and the share-price plummets. It's also likely that you're pondering upon controversies - ranging from those about homosexuality to mass brainwashing - that make some investors remove Exxon Mobil from their Portfolios. Well, it's true that the corporation isn't synonymous with perfection. That doesn't mean though, that you should overlook its stocks.

The Proven Stability

You'd have to keep in mind that the oil-and-gas company isn't entirely new to tragedies and criticisms. Late last year for example, the Exxon Mobil Corporation was linked to a spill in Nigeria that caused numerous fishermen to lose their main source of income. The impact of such a harmful incident (both environmentally and PR-wise) on the corporation's stock price was minimal, if not negligible. Right now, you're probably thinking that even though Exxon Mobil has become virtually immune to nature-related dilemmas, it's still susceptible to the public backlash triggered by controversies. Well, you're wrong.

The Exxon Mobil Corporation is currently involved in anti-gay-bias issues, which really became public last month. In fact, Human Right Campaign - the most prominent group in equality-rights advocacy - claims that the global oil-and-gas firm has been left behind in terms of its anti-discrimination policies. Given that most of America is currently embracing the no-hate notion, biases could spell doom for most companies. ExxonMobil seems to be the exception however, since its stock prices didn't drop when the problem emerged. You'd be shocked to find out that the corporation's share price hasn't even stopped improving.

Discovering the Firm

Now that you've realized that the Exxon Mobil Corporation is a true symbol of stability, you'd want to know more about it. Most likely though, you're most interested in its profits. Well, you'd be pleased to discover that ExxonMobil's 2012 income statement contains encouraging revenue numbers, as the oil-and-gas corporation managed to achieve a gross profit of roughly $180 million - eclipsing its 2010 earnings by a little less than $30 million. What's truly impressive is that the corporation's momentum still hasn't slowed down. Since the beginning of 2013, it's already showing a gross-profit margin of 36 percent.

At this point, you might begin to ask whether such amounts are really remarkable. Of course, the best way to satisfy your curiosity is to compare the company with other Fortune 500 listers. Chevron (NYSE: CVX) follows ExxonMobil in the previous year's profit rankings. You'd be stunned upon knowing that the 1st and 2nd most profitable companies had an earnings gap of almost 40 percent. ExxonMobil's sheer value and economy-driving power could be made even more evident with this fact: Google (NASDAQ:GOOG), Wal-Mart (NYSE:WMT), and American Express' (NYSE:AXP) earnings combined wouldn't be enough to match that of the Exxon Mobil Corporation's.

Acknowledging Risks

You're now aware that the supermajor has no equal. However, you shouldn't assume that it's already an invincible force in the global market. ExxonMobil is still susceptible to shifts in oil and gas prices. If such commodities undergo a decline in value, then it's only to be expected that the firm's profits would dip. You might say that the Exxon Mobil Corporation isn't just about petroleum. Well, even though you're right, you'd have to remember that only 17 percent of the firm's many divisions deal with other offerings. This just means that if entire countries would soon carry out achievable fossil-fuel phase-outs, then Exxon Mobil will be in danger.

How does the corporation plan to boost its earnings and stay relevant you ask? By finding new oil-and-gas opportunities and thus improving production efficiency. Its soon-to-be-cemented partnership with InterOil for gathering natural gas in Papua New Guinea proves this point. Moreover, Exxon Mobil's new drilling project in Ireland also shows the corporation's eagerness in maintaining its competitiveness. As for the matter of relevance, the company relies on a rather underhanded trick - disinformation campaigns. As it seems however, such a tactic is barely changing the public's views about renewable energy.

On the Smart Decision

At present, no other firm - even Chevron - could compare to Exxon Mobil in sheer revenue and value. This is quite impressive to say the least, especially since oil-price fluctuations and supply dilemmas have existed for years. By thinking of this point and taking into account all those that you've recently learned about, you'd understand that Exxon Mobil's shares are the very definition of a safe addition to portfolios - that is, as long as petroleum-free societies don't sprout like mushrooms. Truth be told, shifting from oil-and-gas to wind-and-solar is a goal that would probably require several decades and even centuries.

Disclosure: I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours. I wrote this article myself, and it expresses my own opinions. I am not receiving compensation for it (other than from Seeking Alpha). I have no business relationship with any company whose stock is mentioned in this article.