Shell swings to loss on $16bn impairment charge but pays dividend
Royal Dutch Shell swung to a heavy net first-half loss, but paid a dividend as the Covid-19 crisis hammered oil and gas prices.
The Anglo-Dutch giant reported a second quarter loss of $18.3bn in the second quarter on a current cost of supplies (CCS) basis, used as gauge of net profit. That compared with a £3bn profit a year ago.
Shell declared a second quarter dividend of 16 cents a share, mirroring its first quarter payout and down 66% year on year. The company shocked investors in April when it cut its dividend for the first time since World War 2.
Adjusted earnings fell to $600m from $3.5bn in 2019 and beat analysts forecasts of a $674m loss.
The company also slashed the value of its assets by $16.8bn after lowering its short-term oil and gas price outlook due to an expected sluggish growth in demand in the wake of the coronavirus crisis as well as energy market demand and supply fundamentals.
“Second quarter 2020 results reflected lower realised prices for oil, LNG and gas, lower realised refining margins, oil products sales volumes and higher well write-offs, compared with the second quarter 2019. This was partly offset by very strong crude and oil products trading and optimisation results as well as lower operating expenses,” the company said on Thursday.