January 31, 2018 / 1:22 PM / in a year

BUZZ-PREVIEW-Shell: Analysts positive ahead of Q4 results

** Analysts positive ahead of Q4 results announcement (Feb 1)

** JPM says expects Shell to deliver a solid FY result underpinned by higher Brazil and gas/LNG volumes which should help offset divestments, the Forties outage and seasonally weaker downstream.

** CCS earnings attributable to shareholders excluding identified items seen at $4.24 bln, according to company-provided analyst consensus

** Shell reported near 50 percent rise in Q3 profit in November, driven by strong refining while cash generation underscored the company has adapted well to low oil prices

** Morningstar says as a result of the company’s efforts, including divestiture of capital-intensive low-return upstream and downstream assets, Shell should boost margins and improve returns by 2020, leaving it in a better competitive position

** JPM says there is scope for management to revise the share buyback target upward from $25-30bn with higher oil prices

** BMO says Shell ideally positioned for 2018 and one of its “Best Ideas” within the oil majors

** 15 of 23 analysts rate the stock “buy” or above; 4 hold; 4 sell

** Main peer BP to report results on Feb 6

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