Photo: Repsol

Red ink for Repsol amid sharp drop in oil and gas prices

Spanish oil and gas company Repsol posted a significant quarterly loss after being hit by volatility and decline in oil and gas prices, but it delivered an increased output during the period.

In the first quarter of 2020, Repsol recorded an adjusted net income of €447 million, which represents a decrease of 27.7 per cent compared to the €618 million registered in the same period the previous year.

This result was achieved in a context of exceptional complexity, marked by a sharp drop in oil and gas prices, a drastic decrease in demand triggered by Covid-19.

The average price of Brent and WTI crude oils dropped by 21 per cent and 17 per cent, respectively, compared to the first three months of 2019. At the end of the quarter, Brent traded at under $20 per barrel.

In the case of gas, the drops were even sharper, ranging from 36 per cent, on the Henry Hub, to 56 per cent on the Algonquín.

This volatility and decline in international commodities prices has reduced the valuation of the company’s inventories to an extraordinary degree.

With a negative impact of €790 million ($864.4Mn), the resulting net loss in the first quarter of 2020 was €487 million ($532.9Mn) compared to a profit of €608 million ($665.3Mn) in 1Q 2019.

Reducing expenses

To address the current circumstances, Repsol adopted a Resilience Plan for 2020.

The plan includes initiatives that will represent additional reductions of more than 350 million euros in operating expenses and over 1 billion in investments.

It will also include optimizations of working capital of nearly 800 million with respect to what was initially budgeted.

Repsol also said that, despite the adverse context, the commitment to a shareholder remuneration of 1 euro per share in 2020 will be maintained.

Upstream performance

The Upstream business posted an income of €90 million, compared to €323 million between January and March 2019.

The results of this area have been hampered primarily by the extraordinary drop in international commodities reference prices.

Average production increased by 1.4 per cent, to 710,300 barrels of oil equivalent per day.