BP disappoints City despite surge in profits

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"We have been in growth mode" with the largest commissioning of projects in the company's history, Dudley says; BP pumped 2.58M bbl/day in the quarter, up 18% Y/Y, helped by the start of seven new projects. "All of the businesses are firing on all cylinders", CEO Bob Dudley told CNBC on Tuesday.

BP reported a $2.1bn fourth-quarter underlying replacement cost profit, the company's definition of net income, topping forecasts for $1.9bn, a survey of analysts provided by the company showed.

BP was the first among its European peers to resume share buybacks in the fourth quarter of 2017 after years of dilutive austerity measures in the face of the industry slump. "We are entering the second year of our five-year plan with a real impetus, more and more confident that we can continue to grow", added he.

"Our share buyback programme in the fourth quarter offset the dilution from scrip dividends issued in September and our intent remains to offset any ongoing scrip dilution through further buybacks over time", chief financial officer Brian Gilvary said in a statement.

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As it emerges from the consequences of Deepwater Horizon, where an oil spill killed 11 people, while also facing the global downturn in prices, BP has struggled to maintain its reputation.

BP also took a one-off charge of $900m to adjust to new United States tax rules, although it expected a long-term boost from the lowered corporate tax rates. On an annual basis, BPs profits spiked to $US6.2 billion from $US2.6 billion in 2016.

Exploration delivered the most successful year for BP since 2004, with around 1 billion boe resources discovered. The group benefitted from a rise in oil prices, with the price of a barrel of Brent crude having surged by 40 percent since July.

Nevertheless, the company is still paying the debt of the Deepwater Horizon, they saw a decrease from $6.9 billion to $5.2 billion in 2017.

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