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BP profits soar on record crude prices

Text by AFP

Latest update : 2008-10-28

BP has announced its third quarter net profit jumped 83% to more than eight billion dollars on the back of record oil prices, although these have now dropped from nearly 150 dollars per barrel at peak to 60 dollars this week.

British energy giant BP said on Tuesday that third-quarter net profit soared 83 percent to 8.049 billion dollars (6.434 billion euros) on record high oil prices which have since slumped.
Net profit, excluding gains from the value of its crude oil inventories, rose by 148 percent to 10.03 billion dollars in the three months to September, compared with the same period of 2007, BP said in an earnings release.
World oil prices had struck record pinnacles above 147 dollars per barrel in July on global supply concerns.
However, they have since plunged by about 60 percent, diving underneath 60 dollars per barrel this week, as traders fretted about the impact of a worldwide economic slowdown on energy demand.
BP chief executive Tony Hayward said that crude oil prices could fall even further as the world appeared set to enter a global recession.
"I believe that BP is well-positioned to cope with such volatility," Hayward said in the results statement.
He added: "We think the current turmoil may in fact create opportunities for us and we will look at those very closely."
Production increased by a marginal 0.3 percent to 3.664 million barrels per day of oil equivalent during the third quarter, BP said.
"Although it has since fallen away sharply, the high oil price of the third quarter obviously helped our absolute result," Hayward added.
"But this should not obscure very real operational improvements in refining and rigorous cost control across the company that kept our cash costs essentially flat compared with last year -- despite immense inflationary pressures in the sector."

Date created : 2008-10-28