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Posts under ‘Profits Warning’

Oil slump highlights pressure on dividend payouts

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Screen Shot 2015-08-04 at 22.49.59Extracts from an article by Garry White: 22 Aug 2015

Some in the City are concerned that distributions to shareholders at some major dividend payers are too high. This is particularly true for the oil sector.

Opec is being eaten alive and needs to meet to heal its wounds

Low oil prices bite as Premier Oil waits to tap Shetland field

Based on current forecasts, the prospective yield in 2016 for BP is about 6.9pc and for Shell it stands at 6.7pc. These unusually high yields are often an indicator of an impending cut in the payout. read more

BG Group Profits Crash By 65%

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Screen Shot 2015-08-01 at 20.50.48By LAURA CHESTERS FOR DAILY MAIL

The oil price rout found new victims on both sides of the Atlantic yesterday as BG Group and Chevron revealed profits had tanked.

BG, which is in the process of being sold to Royal Dutch Shell, reported a 65 per cent fall in second quarter profit to £275.5million, while Chevron’s fell 90 per cent.

The oil price has crashed by around 50 per cent since last summer as the shale oil boom in the US, which turned it into the world’s largest fuel exporter, pushed global production higher. read more

Tumbling oil prices

From a Bloomberg article by Joe Carroll and Tara Patel published 12 Jan 2015 by Business Report under the headline:Screen Shot 2015-01-12 at 08.45.23

“Analysis: Falling oil prices to trigger flood of write-downs”


TUMBLING crude prices will trigger a flood of oilfield write-downs starting this month after industry returns slumped to a 16-year low, calling into question half a decade of exploration.

With crude prices down more than 50 percent from their 2014 peak, fields as far-flung as Kazakhstan and Australia are no longer worth pumping, says a team of Citigroup analysts led by Alastair Syme. Firms on the hook for risky, high-cost projects that do not make sense in a $50-a-barrel (R587) market include international titans such as Royal Dutch Shell and small wildcatters like Sanchez Energy. read more

Oil company shares slumped

OPEC’s decision on Thursday not to cut production in order to prop up oil prices sent markets reeling. Oil company shares slumped, wiping billions off firms’ market value… As they come to terms with the new oil regime, companies will cut spending by up to 10 percent in 2015… and delay new project approvals.

LONDON, Nov 28 (Reuters) – With oil company revenues set to drop on the back of a rout in prices, boards will have to cut investments and increase borrowing to maintain their cherished dividend payouts.

OPEC’s decision on Thursday not to cut production in order to prop up oil prices sent markets reeling. Oil company shares slumped, wiping billions off firms’ market value and leaving dividend payouts as the only solace for shareholders.

The world’s top oil companies, or majors, including BP , Royal Dutch Shell, Total, ExxonMobil and Chevron are already in the midst of a painful belt-tightening process. read more

Shell one of 5 Companies Al Gore Says Are Doomed

Screen Shot 2014-08-06 at 09.25.26“Royal Dutch Shell is another company with a doomed oil sands project, according to the Carbon Tracker Initiative. Its Carmon Creek project needs oil prices to hit $157 per barrel in order to be profitable. On top of that, Royal Dutch Shell is seeking to drill for oil in the Arctic, which has already wasted $5 billion of investors’ capital and would waste more money if drilling restarted.”

By John Donovan

According to an article by Matt DiLallo published by The Motley Fool on 23 August, former US VP Al Gore believes that the balance sheets of ExxonMobil, Royal Dutch Shell Plc, ConocoPhillips, Total SA and BP plc include $7 trillion of worthless ‘unburnable” carbon assets. 


“This unburnable carbon is the oil, gas, and coal that is still in the earth that, if extracted and burned, would push the globe over the edge in terms of climate change. Because this is an edge we can’t cross, it would suggest that the companies owning the assets are all but doomed.” read more

The grief of Ben van Beurden

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Screen Shot 2014-02-10 at 16.29.29Extracts from a Daily Mail/This is MONEY” article by Rob Davies published 31 July 2014 under the headline: “Energy lift boosts shares in Royal Dutch Shell and BG Group after both post strong second quarter results”

Boss Ben van Beurden has vowed to sell underperforming assets and be more selective about spending, after beginning his tenure in January with the firm’s first profit warning in a decade. Van Beurden said Shell was ‘less exposed than some of our rivals’ to the impact of sanctions on Russia after the downing of Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 over Ukraine. But he focused on the emotional impact on Shell, which lost four staff and eight members of their families. ‘As a Dutchman, of course, I grieve for the many compatriots who lost their lives in this crash,’ he said. ‘Then, as CEO of Shell, I grieve together with the other 92,000 Shell staff for the colleagues we lost, together with so many of their family members.’ read more

Reflections on the notorious Kashagan ‘Cash All Gone” project 

By John Donovan

In view of the recent shattering news from the jinxed Kashagan project…

Production at Kazakhstan’s Kashagan Oil Field Halted Until 2016

…it is interesting to reflect back on the situation as it was in 2007, reported in this Reuters article by Tom Bergin.

It seems that not much has changed.

It also explains why Royal Dutch Shell ended up issuing a profits warning and launching a fire sale of assets, following a succession of disastrous projects mired by incompetence.  read more

Wal-Mart tops global Fortune 500, edges out Shell

Screen Shot 2014-07-07 at 19.26.55Extract from a CBS money watch article published 7 July 2014

Wal-Mart Stores (WMT), the world’s largest retailer, topped the latest Fortune 500 global rankings of the most valuable companies by revenue, edging out Royal Dutch Shell (RDS.A), the Anglo-Dutch oil and natural gas company, which finished in second place. This marks a comeback for Wal-Mart, which trailed first-place finisher Shell last year. A 40 percent drop-off in profit and a 4.6 percent decline in sales in 2013 hurt the energy giant. read more

Are Asset Sales the Answer for Royal Dutch Shell plc?

Screen Shot 2014-06-23 at 11.37.41Extracts from a Motley Fool article by Arjun Sreekumar published 23 June 2014

On Monday, Shell announced the sale of a 19% stake in Woodside Petroleum, a deal that is expected to raise $5 billion. On Wednesday, the company announced that it had filed a registration statement with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission related to the proposed IPO of its pipeline subsidiary, which could raise up to $750 million. Due largely to ill-timed investments in U.S. shale, continued security issues at its Nigerian operations, and its beleaguered drilling program in Alaska’s Chukchi Sea, Shell’s return on capital employed, or ROCE, averaged under 15% from 2008 to 2012. Sales of under performing downstream and upstream North American assets are providing much-needed cash and should help the company gradually improve its return on capital. Overall, the combination of asset sales, reduced spending, and higher cash flow should allow Shell to grow its dividend at a stronger pace over the next few years, assuming commodity prices remain high and assuming that the oil giant can bring new projects online on time and on budget. read more

Shell Sells Eagle Ford Assets as Part of Global Repositioning

Screen Shot 2014-06-23 at 11.37.41Extract from an Industrial Info Resources article by John Egan published 23 June 2014

Royal Dutch Shell plc is selling its acreage in the Eagle Ford Shale to Sanchez Energy Corporation for about $639 million, continuing the super-major’s asset sales and portfolio repositioning. Shell bought that acreage a few years back for an estimated $1 billion. Last summer, the super-major took a $2.1 billion write-down on the value of its Eagle Ford assets.


Jorma Ollila, tainted departing chairman of Royal Dutch Shell Plc

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“During Ollila’s time at the helm, Shell has spent hundreds of billions on new projects and lavished generous pay deals on its executives, leading to several protest votes by big investors.”

By John Donovan

The Sunday Times reported on the front page of its business section on 8 June 2014 the news that Shell has started a search for a new chairman to replace the tainted Finn, Jorma Ollila. 


“During Ollila’s time at the helm, Shell has spent hundreds of billions on new projects and lavished generous pay deals on its executives, leading to several protest votes by big investors.”

Mr Ollila was recently fined by market regulators for failing to disclose his ownership and control of a company in Luxembourg worth 8.2 million euros. He has admitted breaking the law. He prefers to call it “neglecting the law.” read more

Peter Voser spending more time with his family

Screen Shot 2014-01-03 at 14.32.05By John Donovan

When the surprise announcement was made by Peter Voser that he would be stepping down early from his position as Chief Executive of Royal Dutch Shell Plc, it was claimed that his early exit was prompted by a sudden desire to spend more time with his family.

It supposedly had nothing to do with the financial meltdown that happened on his watch and resulted in a profits warning being issued as soon as he had been pushed out the door. 

Voser was responsible for a number of bungled mega projects, including Arctic oil exploration. read more

Shell boss says refining assets still key despite weak profits

Screen Shot 2014-02-10 at 16.29.29Extracts from a Reuters article published 20 May 2014

LONDON (Reuters) – Royal Dutch Shell will hold on to its refining business despite shedding many underperforming downstream assets, its chief executive said on Tuesday. The global refining sector has suffered over the past year from weak profit margins due to rising capacity and increasing competition and Shell’s downstream business has been a drag on its 2013 and first quarter 2014 results.


Liquefied Natural Gas Could Come to the Rescue for Royal Dutch Shell

Screen Shot 2014-04-19 at 10.07.44Extract from a Motley Fool article by Bob Ciura published 19 May 2014 under the headline: How Liquefied Natural Gas Could Come to the Rescue for Royal Dutch Shell and BP

Royal Dutch Shell’s core net profits fell by 23% last year, prompting the company to undergo what management delicately termed “hard choices” in its portfolio. Basically, the company is resorting to cutting capital expenditures in light of disappointing upstream projects and sharply narrower refining margins. To that end, Shell plans to reduce capital expenditures by $9 billion in 2014 from $46 billion in 2013 to an estimated $37 billion this year. That represents a severe 20% drop. This is a concern since Shell’s production is already going in the wrong direction. Oil majors across the board are suspending new projects or cancelling them altogether, which could put them in dire straits later on. Fortunately, LNG represents one major area that both Shell and BP continue to invest in, and the potential is clearly compelling. read more

Shell boosts dividend after beating first quarter estimates

Screen Shot 2014-02-10 at 16.29.29Reuters article by Dmitry Zhdannikov published 30 April 2014

(Reuters) – Royal Dutch Shell capped a strong first quarter reporting season for oil majors with better-than-expected results which were boosted by gas earnings, while shareholders were rewarded with a higher dividend. Shell, which disappointed the market earlier this year with a rare profit warning, said the bulk of its writedown in downstream on Wednesday was related to the Bukom oil refinery in Singapore. The firm said its first quarter upstream earnings were supported by stronger gas results, offset by the impact of exploration well write-offs, and higher costs and depreciation. “Less positively, oversupply in the industry, rising costs on the back of increasingly difficult explorations, Shell’s exposure to Russia and generally lower margins all present challenges…” read more

Oil giant Royal Dutch Shell to see profits slump by 38 per cent

Screen Shot 2014-02-10 at 16.29.29Extract from a Sunday Express article by: Helen Massy-Beresford published 

Royal Dutch Shell is expected to report that its profits have slumped 38 per cent year on year to $4.6 billion (£2.7 billion), when it unveils its first-quarter results on Wednesday. As part of his turnaround plans van Beurden has pledged to improve cash flow and cut costs.


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