Oil prices will likely be below $70 per barrel this year, as growing U.S. onshore production as well as rising production from conventional fields will keep a lid on prices, Statoil’s chief executive Eldar Sætre told Reuters on Wednesday.
“I think we will most likely be below $70 a barrel,” Sætre told Reuters, commenting on his expectations for oil prices this year.
Earlier today, Statoil reported fourth-quarter results beating analyst expectations and proposed to increase the dividend by 4.5 percent to US$0.23 per share. Statoil’s adjusted earnings increased to US$4 billion in Q4 2017 from US$1.7 billion in Q4 2016, and ahead of analyst expectations of US$3.81 billion.
Apart from deciding to lift the dividend, Statoil also ended—as planned—its scrip dividend program in the third quarter of 2017, joining other oil majors like BP and Shell who also ended their scrip plans under which shareholders could choose to be paid in shares instead of in cash.