Why Shares Of BP plc Are Flat Since This Time Last Year

BP (LSE: BP)(NYSE: BP.US) has dropped  by 0.7% to 440p during the last 12 months, despite hitting the dizzying heights of 483p in May.

The oil and gas giant started September 2012 with its price dropping to 423p, as it revealed the costs of the 2010 Guld of Mexico oil spill disaster could increase threaten to add billions to its already hefty bill of $42bn.

The oil group then released its third-quarter 2012 results at the end of October, and they were stronger than widely anticipated.

The results stated that BP was going to raise its dividend by 12.5%, which led to the share price jumping to 443p.  The replacement cost profit fell to £5.2bn from £5.5bn the previous year; however, analysts had initially expected profits to be at around £4.1bn.

The start of 2013 proved lucrative for the company, as it saw its share price rise to 475p by the end of January. 

BP then released its fourth-quarter results at the beginning of February, and profits again beat analyst’s expectations.  They had predicted a quarterly profit of $3.3bn, though BP actually managed to garner $3.9bn.  The out-performance was largely attributed to a record-breaking result from the blue chip’s refining division.

The first-quarter 2013 report was released at the end of April, and showed an improved performance when compared to 2012.  Profit for the quarter was $4.2bn,  while cash flow rose to $4bn compared to $3.4bn in Q1 2012. Chief  executive Bob Dudley commented:

“These results represent a strong start to 2013 across all of our businesses. [Our] first quarter results demonstrate the progress BP is making in delivering the performance milestones that support our 10-point plan and underpin our commitment to material operating cash flow growth by 2014.”

The latest numbers from BP this year were half-year results released in July.  These showed revenues dropping 0.3% , which was attributed mainly to a lower oil price.  Profits were again up compared to Q2 2012, with BP  earning $1.2bn.

Despite a relatively strong Q2, the share price again took a tumble in August, as it emerged that BP had launched a fresh attempt to halt its compensation payouts for the Gulf spill.

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> Chris does not own any share mentioned in this article.