Energy company and giant FUEL Shell has come under fire from experts for announcing a $5.5 billion payout to shareholders amid the growing cost of living crisis.
This comes as record wholesale gas prices and supply chain problems have put household finances under pressure, driving up energy bills and gasoline costs.
That means households have fallen into a cost-of-living crisis in recent months – but Shell shareholders are fixed on $5.5 billion a day in wages.
The inflation rate reached a decade high of 5.1%, driven by rising fuel and energy costs.
And some families say they are choose between heating and dining because of rising energy bills.
Fuel price record has also been putting pressure on family finances.
The government is also being urged to step in to support the energy industry and households amid warnings that Bills could rise further in the coming months due to higher wholesale market prices.
But rising gasoline prices appear to be boosting Shell’s profits.
The FTSE 100-listed energy giant said in a Q4 update today that profit in its “integrated gas” division is expected to be “significantly higher” than it was a year ago. .
It announced it would return $5.5 billion to shareholders from the sale of its US Permian shale business through share buybacks, a strategy agreed last year and unrelated to gas prices.
Shell’s profits come from its global operations rather than just the UK.
But critics have questioned why companies like Shell can’t do more to reduce energy supplies and fuel costs if they are profiting so much from rising commodity prices.
Howard Cox, founder of FairFuelUK, which advocates for fairer petrol pump pricing, said: “It will leave millions of drivers nauseous, plagued by current unscrupulous fuel supply chains. vomiting, seeing Shell rub even more fiscal salt into the consumer spike in the cost of living of the wound. “
Cox added that the government has little incentive to intervene because it benefits from collecting VAT from higher fuel prices.
“The stench of corporate greed hangs over hard-line drivers who are treated relentlessly like cows making easy money out of concerns about both politics and profits,” he said.
Rising oil and gas company profits and payouts can feel unfair to anyone whose budgets have been stretched by energy prices, said Sarah Coles, personal finance analyst at Hargreaves Lansdown. volume and gasoline increased.
She added: “Energy bills are skyrocketing and we need the government to step in or else millions of people won’t be able to heat their homes.
“This is likely thanks to extra support for the most vulnerable, which is not reflective of the increase in energy prices over the years.
“There is also hope that the government and the energy industry can come up with a solution to reduce the cost of rising prices, before they start this April.”
A Shell spokesperson said: “We’ve been engaged to help customers of energy companies that have recently been successful.
“We are working with the government and others on how to support customers facing rising energy bills and make the UK market sustainable in the long run for consumers and the industry. Karma.”
The company also owns supplier Shell Energy, which lost £84 million in 2020 and £27 million the year before, and has taken on customers from collapsed suppliers First Utilities and Green.
There are also more than 1,000 Shell petrol stations across the UK but half are owned by independent dealers, who can set their own prices.
Gasoline prices are just one factor that affects fuel costs.
About two-thirds of the cost of a liter of fuel is paid to the government in the form of fuel tax and VAT.
Ofgem’s energy price cap is intended to limit bill increases for out-of-contract customers but Not all households benefit.
Limits also increase in October 2021 due to higher wholesale gas prices and families will find out in February how much the next limit will increase from April.
Some in the industry have High energy prices are considered a “national crisis”.
https://www.thesun.co.uk/money/17251024/outrage-shell-announces-payout-amid-cost-of-living-crisis/ Outrage as Shell announces $5.5 billion ‘nausea’ payout to shareholders amid cost of living crisis