BP Posts First Quarterly Loss in More Than a Year -- Update

02/06/18 03:03 AM EST
By Sarah Kent 

LONDON-- BP PLC Tuesday reported its first quarterly loss since mid-2016, weighed down by one-off charges relating to the company's 2010 blowout in the Gulf of Mexico and the U.S. tax overhaul.

The blow in the fourth quarter capped what was otherwise a successful year, as the British oil giant reported its first annual profit since the oil price crashed nearly four years ago, buoyed by rising oil prices, stronger production and healthy earnings from its refining and marketing divisions.

BP said its replacement cost profit--a number analogous to the net income that U.S. oil companies report--was $2.8 billion in 2017, compared with a loss of $1 billion in 2016. But a fourth-quarter loss of $583 million highlights the challenges that could still hamper the company's ambitious plan to return to growth.

BP's earnings are the latest in a choppy reporting season for big oil companies. Royal Dutch Shell PLC's net profit tripled last year, but a drop in cash flow in the fourth quarter raised concerns among investors. U.S. rivals Exxon Mobil Corp. and Chevron Corp. both missed earnings expectations and suffered a substantial selloff as a result.

BP said that charges in 2017 relating to the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico were $5.2 billion, greater than its expectations.

Chief Executive Bob Dudley said BP was going into the second year of its five-year plan with real momentum and added that the business was increasingly confident that it can continue to deliver growth.

Write to Sarah Kent at sarah.kent@wsj.com

 

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

February 06, 2018 03:03 ET (08:03 GMT)

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