Royal Dutch Shell Plc reported a 14 percent rise in fourth quarter profits on Thursday, as high oil prices outweighed dismal industry-wide margins in its refining business.

Europe's largest oil company by market capitalization said its current cost of supply (CCS) net income was $6.46 billion, helped by one-off gains from the sale of assets.

Excluding one-offs, the result rose 18 percent to $4.85 billion, shy of an average forecast of $5.17 billion from a Reuters poll of nine analysts.

Brent crude prices averaged $109 per barrel last quarter, up from $88 a year before.

CCS earnings strip out unrealized gains or losses related to changes in the value of inventories, and as such are comparable with net income under U.S. accounting rules.

(Reporting by Tom Bergin; Editing by Helen Massy-Beresford)