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BP issues upbeat Q1 outlook

Tuesday's earnings update was published ahead of first-quarter results due on May 7. (AFP)
  • Gas sales are "expected to be strong" after a solid performance in the fourth quarter of 2023.
  • Oil sales have regained strength after a weak performance in the prior period.

London, United Kingdom — British energy major BP said on Tuesday that it expects rising oil and gas production and solid trading in the first quarter.

“Upstream production in the first quarter is expected to be higher compared to the prior quarter, with production higher in oil production and operations, and slightly higher in gas and low carbon energy,” BP said in a brief statement.

Gas sales are “expected to be strong” after a solid performance in the fourth quarter of 2023, while oil sales have regained strength after a weak performance in the prior period.

In response, BP’s share price gained almost two percent in late morning deals on London’s flat stock market.

Tuesday’s earnings update was published ahead of first-quarter results due on May 7.

“It looks like BP is poised for another strong quarterly scorecard after results in the final three months of 2023 outpaced expectations,” commented Victoria Scholar, head of investment at Interactive Investor.

She noted that BP and the broader energy sector have also been supported by “underlying oil prices with geopolitical supply shocks and improving global demand”.

The price of Brent crude topped $91 a barrel on Friday as worries intensified that the Gaza war could spiral into a broader conflict involving major crude producer Iran.

Higher oil prices tend to boost profits and revenues across the energy industry.

BP’s main British rival, Shell, revealed last week that it expects solid but lower natural gas sales in the first quarter, after a particularly strong performance in the final three months of last year.

Shell is scheduled to report its first-quarter earnings on May 2.