Shell Plc Sees Higher Earnings Despite LNG Woes
- 09-Jan-2023 3:51 PM
- Journalist: Nicholas Seifield
Shell Plc saw a promising increase in their gas-trading earnings during the final three months of 2022, overcoming the challenges that were encountered earlier in the year. This suggests that they could be able to avoid what happened to some of their peers when they profited from higher gas prices in Europe.
Despite this, it remains unclear if these results will have any effect on their bottom line due to decreasing energy prices. Nevertheless, investors remain optimistic and show support by increasing Shell shares by 1.7%. RBC Capital Markets' Biraj Borkhataria further believes that the recent numbers prove that the issue was not structural, hopefully setting Shell up for future successes.
Wael Sawan just assumed his position as Chief Executive Officer at Shell Plc, and the swings in performance demonstrate both the opportunities and challenges ahead. Last year, the company and its competitors saw a major influx of cash.
However, whether it continues will be essential to their ability to provide returns for shareholders while investing in environmentally sustainable energy sources. With the effects of Russia's conflict in Ukraine, an economic recession, and China attempting to contain the effects of COVID-19, this could become another unstable year for energy markets. The price of crude oil has declined near 40% since its peak in 2022 while mild weather has caused a sharp decrease in European natural gas prices.
Despite the potential for more government influence in energy markets, Shell reported a $2.4 billion bill from windfall taxes in the UK and EU during 2022. Their liquefied natural gas production decreased to between 6.6 and 7 million tons as Prelude and QGC projects faced difficulties in Australia. Refining margins also increased to $19 per barrel, 27% higher than the previous quarter, while chemical margins rose to $37 a ton after dipping into the negatives earlier on. This suggests that Shell is still performing well despite the external pressures.