Royal Dutch Shell earnings missed expectations by a billion dollars and the result may be more cutbacks in capital spending. That was a 72% drop in profits. The big miss follows disappointing results from BP as the Industry is feeling the effects from the collapse in refining margins, which was the savior of big oil after the crude oil price crash. With the falling production at Shell from disruptions of supply in Nigeria and Canada and a hit on its natural gas business, it’s clear that Shell and most other oil companies are going to make more cutbacks.
It seems that crude oil is busting out of its bust cycle as the crash in oil prices has put a market that was seriously oversupplied back into a semblance of balance. The reason that we are seeing such a quick turnaround is an old story about how low prices cure low prices.
Another 6.2% drop in the Shanghai composite helped drive oil and industrial metals to a six-year low, and only seemed to slow after China pumped 120 billion yuan worth of seven-day reverse repurchase agreements, or reverse repos, which are a short-term loans to commercial lenders in the money market.