An investigation of oil trading by the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission will likely target evidence that traders intended to manipulate markets rather than just schemed to make money, former officials of the agency said.
Posts from ‘May, 2008’
More than 500 truck drivers who work at Royal Dutch Shell Plc terminals across Britain may go on strike…
PARIS, May 31 (Reuters) – Russia’s Prime Minister, Vladimir Putin, said he had warned BP about the risks of setting up a venture with a group of Russian billionaires when he blessed its creation as Russian president in 2003.
The proposed “fat cat tax” has provoked anguished protests from large Dutch companies, who say that it will ruin their ability to compete on the European, and international, market. Some companies, including Royal Dutch Shell, have warned that they might move their headquarters to another country.
HSBC’s stormy annual meeting is the latest high water mark in the tide of shareholder discontent. Add it to the experiences of Royal Dutch Shell, BP and GlaxoSmithKline over recent weeks and the message is clear: investors are fed up with being seen as weak. The French government is threatening to curb “perfectly scandalous” pay packets for executives in underperforming companies, while the Dutch want to tax executive bonuses and severance packages.
Last year was another fabulous year for Exxon Mobil. It made a record $40.6 billion in profits. It replaced its reserves, no easy task with oil so hard to find and extract these days. Its safety record was stellar. Its return on capital was an astounding 32 percent, another record. It spent $21 billion in capital investments while also paying out $36 billion on a combination of dividends and stock buy backs. It share price rose 22 percent.
In 2006,Royal Dutch Shell was pressured into selling a controlling stake in its $20 billion Sakhalin-2 oil project to Gazprom at a below-market price after environmental regulators threatened it with billions of dollars in fines.
Oil prices ended a volatile week almost $10 below their record $135 levels as the Financial Services Authority joined a worldwide investigation into the price manipulation of crude.
All around the world, in a multitude of ways, the soaring price of oil is hurting rich and poor alike. For the lucky ones, it is simply a matter of changing their lifestyle. But those most vulnerable to the price of oil have been driven on to the streets in angry protests, which raise a fundamental question: what can we do to survive in a world where a barrel of oil costs $127 (£64)?
The Kremlins campaign against foreign ownership of Russian energy resources forced Shell to cede control of the $20 billion (£10 billion) Sakhalin-2 oil and gas project to Gazprom last year. As the only big energy company not under Russian control, TNK-BP is firmly in its sights.
Yesterday shares in Arrow Energy, Australia’s number four producer of coal-seam gas, were still halted as it worked on an agreement to sell an interest in its projects. Shell was rumoured to be the likely partner.