Friday, June 11, 2010

Sorry shareholders, there will be BP blood

June 11, 2010, 11:50 a.m. EDT

By MarketWatch

NEW YORK (MarketWatch) -- Drip, drip, drip.


"In some camps, a dividend cut has been criticized for penalizing innocent shareholders, widows and orphans invested in pension funds. They argue that BP shouldn't bow to the Obama administration and lawmakers who argue that the move is prudent given the inability to stop the leak, the $1 billion spent so far to fix, contain and clean it up and the hundreds of billions in potential economic damage to Gulf communities. Read First Take on potential hit to pensions.

But before those shareholders cry foul, they should ask themselves how much of the $63.68 billion in profits BP made in the previous three years should have been spent on additional precautionary measures. They should ask themselves why they ignored the company's poor track record for safety -- two BP refineries account for 97% of all industry's flagrant violations during the last three years, according to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. Read AJC blog post on BP."


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