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ConocoPhillips forecasts 16% increase in shareholder return in 2022

Oil producer ConocoPhillips COP.N said on Monday it expects to return 16% more capital to shareholders compared with 2021, and added a new variable return of cash to its plans.

Oil and gas companies have either raised their dividends or announced share buybacks, underscoring the energy industry’s focus on shareholder returns over spending, even as crude price witness a jump of about 38% this year.

The company is initiating a three-tier capital return program that will consist of an ordinary dividend tier, a share repurchase tier, and a newly authorized quarterly variable return of cash tier.

It expects return of capital to shareholders in 2022 of about $7 billion.

ConocoPhillips also projected its capital expenditure to be around $7.2 billion in 2022, lower than the 2021 forecast of around $8 billion it had provided in September.

For 2022, the company expects annual average production of 1.8 million barrels oil equivalent per day (boed), representing low single-digit percentage underlying growth versus pro forma 2021.
Source: Reuters (Reporting by Arunima Kumar in Bengaluru; editing by Uttaresh.V)

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