Dec 21, 2020

Shell to take further $4.5bn writedown after bruising year

Royal Dutch Shell will slash billions of dollars from the value of its assets, underlining how the blow to oil demand from the pandemic and the shift to renewable energy is forcing producers to rapidly adjust. Already under pressure before the pandemic struck, Shell has since suspended share buybacks, lowered capital spending, slashed costs, issued bonds and secured new credit lines. In an effort to woo back shareholders, Shell in October raised the payout and declared a new era of "Dividend growth." Shell has adopted a net-zero emissions goal as the pressure from both environmentalists as well as investors to tackle climate change grows, but it has been scrambling to come up with a corporate strategy that satisfies shareholders and staff. In the third quarter, the energy company's net income adjusted for cost of supply - Shell's preferred profit measure - dropped to $955m, down from $4.8bn in the same period a year ago.

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