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A New Zealand BP petrol station showing the decline in prices on April 11. Photo: Hagen Hopkins/Getty Images

Oil-and-gas giant BP reported an extremely steep decline in quarterly profits on Tuesday in a stark sign of how the collapse in demand and prices is affecting the world's biggest producers.

Driving the news: The London-based multinational posted a quarterly profit of roughly $800 million, a two-thirds drop from $2.4 billion in the same period last year.

  • The results reflect lower prices, and "demand destruction" in March, among other forces. "The environment is brutal," CEO Bernard Looney told the Financial Times.

Why it matters: The report provides fresh detail into how the sector is planning to navigate a tough new landscape.

  • "I think we’re in this for quite some time," Looney told Reuters. The company reported an increase in debt.
  • BP, which has already announced a deep spending cut, said it's taking other steps to shore up its finances, including a new $10 billion credit facility.
  • The company said it's planning for a breakeven point below $35-per-barrel (Brent) in 2021.

What's next: More tough reports. Shell posts its results on Thursday, followed by ExxonMobil and Chevron on Friday.

  • And looking ahead, the second quarter is likely to be even tougher. The International Energy Agency sees far greater demand loss during this period, with the trough coming in April and only slight recovery in May.
  • BP expects its production to fall next quarter, and demand for refined fuels will be "significantly lower in BP’s key European and North America businesses."

Go deeper: Total and BP strike big renewable energy deals

Go deeper

Aug 5, 2020 - Health

Fauci calls U.S. coronavirus testing delays "totally unacceptable"

NIAID director Anthony Fauci told CNN's chief medical correspondent Sanjay Gupta on Wednesday that it is "totally unacceptable" that Gupta was unable to test a patient for the coronavirus before operating on them.

Why it matters: Mass delays in coronavirus test results across the U.S. have thwarted mitigation efforts recommended by public health experts, per the New York Times. In absence of a federal plan, a bipartisan group of governors on Tuesday proposed one of the country's first interstate testing strategies.

Updated Oct 7, 2020 - Health

World coronavirus updates

Expand chart
Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins; Map: Axios Visuals

New Zealand now has active no coronavirus cases in the community after the final six people linked to the Auckland cluster recovered, the country's Health Ministry confirmed in an email Wednesday.

The big picture: The country's second outbreak won't officially be declared closed until there have been "no new cases for two incubation periods," the ministry said. Auckland will join the rest of NZ in enjoying no domestic restrictions from late Wednesday, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said, declaring that NZ had "beat the virus again."

Amy Harder, author of Generate
Aug 6, 2020 - Energy & Environment

Coronavirus hastens Big Oil's Atlantic divide on climate change

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The pandemic is accelerating a divide between European and American oil companies over climate change and clean energy.

Why it matters: Bottom lines and investor returns will be vastly different across the corporate spectrum depending on how aggressively the world tackles climate change in the coming decades.