For the second time in six months, Royal Dutch Shell has raised their dividend it pays out, this time by 4% as earning beat expectations and fuel demand continues recovering. Shell reported $3.2 billion in the first quarter ending March 2021, compared to $2.9 billion during the same period last year and $393 million in the last quarter of 2020. These earning also include losses of about $200 million in Texas during the state’s winter storm in February. The company’s stock price is up 9% year-to-date compared to loosing 40% in 2020.
Fuel recovery demand has been strongest in the United States as the country continues its massive vaccination program for Covid-19 and states across the country roll back lockdown restrictions as the new case count keeps going down in most areas of the country.
Shell’s efforts to reduces its debt began in 2019 and during the first quarter of 2021, the oil giant shrank its debt by $4 billion, down to $71.3 billion. As part of the company’s sustainable future, it has been investing heavily into renewable energy sources and technology and aims to get its debt down to $65 billion. In 2021, it is expected to spend over $10 billion on renewable energy sources and developing technology. Shell has previously said it hopes to be carbon neutral by 2050.