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BP downgraded as outlook pessimism will be hard to shift says HSBC

The broker can’t see the market’s perception of the problems changing quickly

Can it replace its oil earnings?

BP PLC (LON:BP) has been downgraded by HSBC even though the broker believes the greener policies introduced by CEO Bernard Looney can succeed.

Investor pessimism over the future is overdone, says the broker, especially about the oil giant’s ability to find its place in a low-emissions world.

But the broker can’t see the market’s perception of the problems changing quickly, so it has trimmed its share price target to 360p and cut its rating to 'hold' from 'buy'.

While the oil price rally has eased concerns over this year’s numbers, market worries over the longer term have not gone away.

HSBC believes the numbers can work as the shift in emphasis will see cashflow per barrel rise, capex fall and the consumer/convenience segment grow to replace forgone oil and gas income.

But buybacks haven’t moved the dial for the share price and with the improvement in cashflow this year already priced in, the better looking longer-term financials aren’t likely to do it either says HSBC, hence the downgrade.

BP shares rose  0.1% to 324p today.

Quick facts: BP PLC


Price: 304.65 GBX

Market Cap: £61.19 billion

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