MARKET MOVEMENTS:

--Brent crude oil edged up 0.2% to $85.62 a barrel.

--European benchmark gas rose 1.1% to EUR58 a megawatt hour.

--Gold futures were flat at $1,945.20 a troy ounce.

--LME copper fell 1.2% at $9,164.50 a metric ton.

--Wheat futures edged down 0.2% at $7.60 a bushel.

 

TOP STORY:

BP's CEO Plays Down Renewables Push

BP PLC Chief Executive Bernard Looney plans to dial back elements of the oil giant's high-profile push into renewable energy, he has said in recent discussions with people close to the company.

Mr. Looney has said he is disappointed in the returns from some of the oil giant's renewable investments and plans to pursue a narrower green-energy strategy, according to people familiar with the discussions. He has told some of the people that BP needs to do more to convince shareholders of its strategy to maximize profit in areas where it has a competitive advantage, including its legacy oil-and-gas operations.

In some of the conversations, Mr. Looney has said he plans to place less emphasis on so-called ESG goals--a catchall term for environmental, social and governance--to help clarify that those aren't distracting the company from its ability to deliver profits, the people said.

 

OTHER STORIES:

OPEC+ Ministers Set to Stay the Course on Oil Production Amid China Covid Woes

An OPEC+ panel will likely recommend keeping the group's current oil-production policy unchanged Wednesday, delegates said, amid uncertainties about demand in China and the impact of sanctions on Russian crude supplies.

Maintaining the status quo will allow the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and a group of producers led by Russia--collectively known as OPEC+--to take more time to assess consumption data from China, the world's biggest oil importer, and determine how a resurgence of Covid-19 cases there and European Union sanctions on Moscow have affected demand.

Delegates said that OPEC+ will remain conservative in their approach until there are clearer signals that markets require higher crude supplies.

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Glencore 2022 Production Volumes in Line With Guidance

Glencore PLC said Wednesday that its 2022 production volumes were in line with the guidance issued in October.

The FTSE 100-listed commodity mining and trading company said that copper and zinc volumes reflected the base effect of asset sales as well as geotechnical constraints and supply-chain headwinds in Kazakhstan.

Glencore said its copper production fell 12% to 1.1 million metric tons last year compared with guidance of 1.1 million metric tons, plus or minus 20,000 tons.

Copper guidance for 2023 stands at 1.0 million metric tons, plus or minus 30,000 tons.

 

MARKET TALKS:

Nickel Pricing Likely to Stay Volatile in 1H

1058 GMT - Nickel pricing is likely to remain volatile for the first half of 2023 with the market still reeling from last year's short squeeze and subsequent drop in trading volumes. "Increased fragmentation of the nickel market, along with recurring attempts to remedy this and a lack of transparency, suggest prices will remain volatile," Bank of America Global Research says in a note. A correction on the LME is likely later this year, but as electric-vehicle demand for nickel grows, output will need to increase, BofA says. "We think that may be difficult, so the nickel market, both in terms of Class 1, refined and Class 2, non-refined units, is set to flip back into deficit by 2026. This should ultimately keep prices supported." (yusuf.khan@wsj.com)

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Glencore's 2022 Production Disappoints, But Tailwinds Brighten Outlook

1010 GMT - Although Glencore's share price has performed strongly over the past six to 12 months, its 2022 output figures will have disappointed shareholders, eToro analyst Mark Crouch says in a note. Results were in line with its October guidance but the slide in production reflects a range of issues including asset sales, production problems, supply-chain issues as well as underwhelming hauls at some sites with 2023 production guidance fairly conservative, Crouch says. "Looking forward, though, there are some tailwinds that might provide a demand boost for base metals, such as the lifting of Covid-19 restrictions in China and a brighter-than-expected outlook for the global economy," Crouch says. Shares are down 0.2% at 540.40 pence. (anthony.orunagoriainoff@dowjones.com)

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Glencore's 2022 Production Update Unlikely to Change Outlook

0833 GMT - Although Glencore's better production numbers will likely drive some small consensus earnings increases into year end there was little in the release to change outlook as there was a lack of new guidance for 2023, RBC Capital Markets analyst Tyler Broda says in a note. "We continue to see Glencore as providing the best risk/reward on a 6 to 12 month view in the sector, however near-term pressure on coal prices, driven by falling [Japan Korea LNG] gas prices, are likely to weigh in the short term," Broda says. RBC rates the stock outperform and has a 520 pence target price. Shares are up 0.6% at 544.30 pence. (anthony.orunagoriainoff@dowjones.com)

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Metals Slip Ahead of Fed Rate Decision

0836 GMT - Metals are slipping ahead of Wednesday's Federal Reserve decision on interest rates, with the market largely expecting a 25 basis-point hike today. Three-month copper is down 0.9% to $9,196 a metric ton while gold is 0.3% lower at $1,938.90 a troy ounce. The market is entering an pivotal spot for risk markets, with the Fed able to set the tone for the months ahead, says Stephen Innes, managing partner at SPI Asset Management. While the market is widely expecting a 25bp hike, a less hawkish outcome would be welcomed by investors, he adds. (yusuf.khan@wsj.com)

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Oil Ticks Higher Ahead of Fed, OPEC+ Meetings

0834 GMT - Oil prices edge higher ahead of meetings of the Federal Reserve and an OPEC+ panel. Brent crude gains 0.3% to $85.73 a barrel. While both meetings have the potential to move the oil market, the likely outcomes have been well flagged ahead of Wednesday. The OPEC+ panel is largely expected to recommend keeping output levels unchanged while the Fed is broadly seen raising interest rates by half a percentage point. The OPEC+ meeting will not consist of all the group members and so is unlikely to see a big change in policy, ING says in a note. "The meeting could shed some more light on how the group sees the outlook evolving in the months ahead," the bank notes. (william.horner@wsj.com)

 

Write to Barcelona Editors at barcelonaeditors@dowjones.com

 

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

February 01, 2023 07:26 ET (12:26 GMT)

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