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Big Oil’s Dilemma: Save or Borrow?

Screen Shot 2015-01-07 at 23.11.04From an article by Justin Scheck published 7 Jan 2015 by Dow Jones Newswires under the headline:

“Oil Firms’ New Dilemma: Save, or Borrow More?


For years, big oil companies have been spending more money than they bring in. With oil prices having more than halved since last June, that is becoming an ever trickier way to run their businesses.

Now, companies like Exxon Mobil Corp., Royal Dutch Shell PLC and BP PLC must decide whether to risk future earnings by cutting developments, risk upsetting investors by cutting dividends, or take on big debt in the hope that oil prices will soon recover.

Shell Chief Executive Ben van Beurden has said in recent months that last year’s capital spending would be lower than 2013’s. A spokesman said the company has enough borrowing capacity to maintain dividend and capital spending levels “for a reasonable period of time.” 

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