The oil crash drove billionaire Carl Icahn’s publicly-traded company to a loss in the fourth quarter.
Icahn Enterprises, which owns significant stakes in several energy companies, reported a loss of $US478 million, or $US3.84 a unit, beating estimates on revenues of $US3.4 billion.
That’s compared to a profit of $US222 in the same period the previous year.
IEP also announced a loss of $US355 million on revenues of $US4.4 billion in the third quarter because of lower oil prices.
“This year’s results were obviously disappointing, with the precipitous decline in oil prices impacting the profitability of many of our segments,” Icahn said in a statement. “I believe a great amount of profit in the next few years will be made by those who hold positions in energy companies. However, I also believe that oil prices will continue to decline in the near term.”
The companies under IEP’s energy segment include Talisman Energy and Chesapeake Energy, and Transocean, shares of which have slumped with most other companies in the sector since last June.
The loss could have been worse if not for Apple, which massively beat expectations in its fourth quarter earnings. In a recent letter to investors, Icahn said he thinks the $US750 billion+ company is actually worth more than $US1 trillion.
“The performance of our investment in Apple, the largest position in our Investment segment, softened the impact of the decline in oil prices and hopefully will continue to do so (I look forward to wearing the watch in the very near future and possibly driving the car in the more distant future),” Icahn wrote.