Historic profits at oil giant BP nearly pushed London’s FTSE 100 into positive territory today.
The capital’s premier index edged 0.06 per cent lower to 7,409.11 points, while the domestically-focused mid-cap FTSE 250 index, which is more aligned with the health of the UK economy, dropped over one per cent to below 20,000 points.
Oil mega cap BP this morning said it raked in profits of $8.45bn (£6.9bn) in the three months to June, the highest level in 14 years, sending its shares up nearly three per cent and to the second on the FTSE 100 biggest risers table.
The firm was lifted by energy prices surging on countries racing to get their economies back to full strength after the end of Covid-19 restrictions and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine casting doubt of supply security.
Half year profits came in at $14.6bn (£12bn). Wide margins on production also lifted BP’s profits.
“Good refining margins and oil trading delivering strong underlying cash growth. Or you could just say oil and gas prices are so high it’s like printing money,” Neil Wilson, chief market analyst at Markets.com, said.
The news sent Shell, BP’s rival and also listed on the FTSE 100, up 1.4 per cent. The pair represent an enormous share of the index, meaning movements in their share price exert a strong influence on its direction.
Oil prices jump around 1.3 per cent.
FTSE 100 housebuilders tumbled on fears higher interest rates will cool demand in the property market.
Taylor Wimpey, Barratt, Berkeley and Persimmon lined the biggest fallers column.