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ConocoPhillips Q2 Profit Beats View; Will Sell Entire Stake in Lukoil (COP)

Integrated oil giant ConocoPhillips ( COP

) on Wednesday posted better-than-expected second quarter earnings, and said it would sell its entire stake in fellow oil producer Lukoil by the end of 2011.

The Houston-based company reported second quarter net income of $4.2 billion, or $2.77 per share, compared with $859 million, or 57 cents per share, in the year-ago period. Excluding one-time items, adjusted profit was $1.67 per share.

On average, Wall Street analysts expected a smaller adjusted profit of $1.56 per share.

The company also announced as part of its plan to lower debt by selling $10 billion in assets, that it would sell 40% of its stake in Russia's Lukoil back to the company for $3.44 billion. It will then sell the remainder of its stake in open market transactions by the end of 2011. Previously, it had said it would sell only half its stake in Lukoil.

Previously, Conoco said it would sell half of its Lukoil shares.

CEO Jim Mulva said in a statement, "Given the expected business environment and our stated strategy to enhance returns and increase distributions, we have made the decision to sell our entire stake in Lukoil."

ConocoPhillips shares rose 58 cents, or +1.1%, in premarket trading Wednesday.

The Bottom Line

We have been recommending shares of COP since Oct.7, 2009, when the stock was trading at $48.41. The company has a 4.04% dividend yield, based on last night's closing stock price of $54.44.

ConocoPhillips ( COP ) is a "recommended" dividend stock, holding a Dividend.com DARS™ Rating of 3.5 out of 5 stars.

Be sure to visit our complete recommended list of the Best Dividend Stocks , as well as a detailed explanation of our ratings system here .

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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