What’s the Question?


Oh, yes: Why are BP’s profits down?

Analysts at banks including UBS, Bank of America and JPMorgan Cazenove now predict BP could unlock as much as $100 billion for investors, either by splitting its upstream exploration and production division from its refining and marketing arm, or selling off its entire US business.

BP’s shares are still trading 28% lower than they were at the time of the Macondo spill in April, despite oil prices soaring to $127 a barrel this year. Shell is up 13% over the same period.

A breakup? Is the writing on the wall that difficult to parse? Investors – I resent that term – may indeed only feel the company has only lost its way. But they are fooling themselves in their larger capacity as citizens grappling with how an oil giant deals with the future of transportation. What happens at those board meetings anyway? Do they really sit and listen to climate change deniers spout off? Really? Electric cars as the connection from the past to what’s next continue to dog the energy dinosaurs [sorry]. It’s powering those which is where the money is and will be, until people can figure how to live closer to work. What happened to Beyond Petroleum? Was it only an excellent marketing strategy?