Seadrill defies expectations by raising dividend, outlook

|About: Seadrill Limited (SDRL)|By:, SA News Editor

Seadrill (SDRL) +1.3% premarket after increasing dividends and forecasting earnings to show "meaningful improvement” in Q2 and increase further for the rest of the year as utilization rates rise (Q1 results).

The dividend raise is a mere $0.02 (to an even $1.00) but SDRL had warned in February that it saw “limited value” in paying out more than $0.98 because of slowing growth in the rig market in 2014-15.

SDRL says the market still "suffers from limited exploration drilling and delays in field developments,” bit it has seen "increased inquiries” in recent weeks.

Q1 net income rose to $3.1B from $440M in the year-ago quarter on financial gains of $2.2B from the deconsolidation of Seadrill Partners; consolidated EBITDA was $788M, beating estimates of $740M.