Royal Dutch Shell profit slumps to two-decade low in 2020 as pandemic bites

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Royal Dutch Shell profit slumps to two-decade low in 2020 as pandemic bites

Royal Dutch Shell, simply dubbed as Shell, the British-Dutch multinational oil and natgas “Supermajor” headquartered in Hague, Netherlands, reported later this week that the energy industry mogul’s annual profit was plunged to its lowest in more than two-decade as a still-inflaming pandemic outbreak had wreaked havoc on global economy and grievously hurt energy demands.

However, Shell had added that the company’s trading business and retail network had helped cushion up some of the blows stemmed from the pandemic’s fiscal consequences.

Shell profits succumb to two-decade low in 2020

On top of that, according to Shell’s quarterly earnings’ report released later this week, the Anglo-Dutch energy major’s annual profits had witnessed a whopping slump of 71 per cent to $4.8 billion last year as the energy mogul’s oil and gas outputs alongside profits from refinery businesses had been hit with a hefty whiplash.

Nonetheless, in a bid to restore investors’ confidence, Shell also added that it had been brewing off an option to raise dividends over the first quarter of 2021 despite a deeper drop in fourth-quarter profit and cash flow that missed analysts’ estimates by a wider margin, as Shell Chief Ben van Beurden said in a statement, “We are coming out of 2020 with a stronger balance sheet.

In tandem, Shell’s quarterly earnings’ report for Q4, 2020, came forth less than a week before the fossil-fuel “Supermajor” has been scheduled to release its long-term strategy, while a press agency report published later this week had quoted sources as saying that Shell would unfurl its long-term goal next week to become carbon-neutral by 2050 and would try to persuade investors that the Anglo-Dutch company could shelve a profitable future even in a low-carbon world.

Besides, according to Shell’s fourth-quarter earnings’ report, the company had digested a 28 per cent drop in fuel sales last year, however, losses were broadly checked by a rise in earnings from trading and retail which involve sales on its network of more than 45,000 filling stations across the globe.

However, Shell’s fourth-quarter profit slumped as much as 87 per cent to $393 million compared to the same time a year earlier, mostly hoisted down by a growing holocaust in natgas futures’ prices, while the Anglo-Dutch energy behemoth’s net debt shot up by $2 billion at the end of Q4, 2020, compared to a Q3 debt of $75.4 billion with debt-to-equity ratio climbing as much as 32.3 per cent.