Trafigura will hand over £1.4bn ($1.7bn) to traders and shareholders after its net profit more than doubled from last year’s record levels, powered by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the escalating energy crisis.
The Swiss-based commodities trading company announced that net profit had soared to £5.7bn ($7bn) for the year ending in September.
The monster earnings are more than the previous four years combined, with market volatility and investor uncertainty driving gas prices to record highs and oil prices to 14-year peaks within the past 12 months.
The £1.4bn payout reflects how trading houses have been one of the big winners significantly from the energy crisis, benefitting Trafigura’s 1,100 shareholders which are mainly made up of executives and traders at the privately held firm.
Trafigura has established itself as a profitable organisation through shifting raw materials around the globe, with assets ranging from mines and ports to energy infrastructure across 150 countries.
Its earnings have spiked over the past three years as energy market volatility has increased.
For context, in 2019, the last year before oil and gas markets were hit by the coronavirus pandemic and the following energy crisis, it posted net profit of less than $900m.
Its strong financial position has enabled the company to enter into a long-term gas deal with Germany.
Jeremy Weir, Trafigura’s executive chairman and chief executive said: “The past year saw our people work hard to solve the disruptions created by unprecedented market volatility and the big structural shifts that are shaping our industry.”