(Sharecast News) – BP announced a fresh share buyback programme and raised its dividend despite a sharp drop in first half profits.
“Another quarter of performing while transforming. Our underlying performance was resilient with good cash delivery – during a period of significant turnaround activity and weaker margins in our refining business,” BP boss, Bernard Looney, said.
“We’re delivering our strategy at pace – we’ve started up two major oil and gas projects to help keep energy flowing today and we’re accelerating our transformation through our five transition growth engines.”
Looney was referring to the start-up of its Mad Dog Phase 2 and the Reliance operated KG D6-MJ projects.
The oil major posted a 78% drop in its second quarter attributable profits to reach $1.79bn.
On a replacement cost basis, the oil major’s profit fell 73% to $2.34bn.
Earnings per share on that same basis meanwhile reduced from $27.74 to $14.77.
Capital expenditures also declined, by $4.3bn after a $3.3bn decline over the previous three months.
Its net debt on the other hand rose by 11.4% to $23.66bn.
BP’s guidance for shareholders distributions was unchanged.
Based on the company’s current forecast for a price of Brent oil of around $60 a barrel, the company said it expected to deliver $4.0bn of share buybacks per year at the lower end of its $14-18bn range for capex.
It was also expecting an annual increase in its dividend per share of approximately 4%.
The company raised its interim dividend by 10% to 7.27p per share.