May 1, 2018 / 8:40 AM / in a year

BP CFO flags possible dividend boost this year

LONDON (Reuters) - BP Chief Financial Officer Brian Gilvary on Tuesday said the company might consider boosting dividends later this year following a recovery in oil prices and profits.

“With these oil prices, we will now see net debt naturally start to decline and that will give an opportunity later this year for potential further distribution around buybacks or a conversation with the board around dividend,” Gilvary said in an analyst call after reporting first-quarter earnings.[nL8N1S80NF]

BP announced in October plans to buy back $1.6 billion in shares per year, becoming the first European oil and gas major to resume buybacks after a three-year downturn.

The move was aimed at offsetting the dilutive effect of scrip dividends, where shareholders can opt to receive dividends via cash or shares.

Reporting by Ron Bousso, editing by Louise Heavens

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