TNK-BP Tumbles as Sechin Spurs Zero Dividend Woes: Moscow Mover
Stock Chart for BP PLC (BP/)
OAO TNK-BP Holding (TNBP) headed for the lowest level in more than a month after Igor Sechin, chief executive officer of the oil company’s new owner, stoked concern shareholders won’t get a payout for last year.
The stock dropped 3 percent to 40.98 rubles by 1:03 p.m. in Moscow, falling for a third day. The number of shares traded was 166,800, equivalent to about 25 percent of the three-month average. TNK-BP has declined 30 percent this year.
Sechin proposed that state-controlled OAO Rosneft will be accountable for TNK-BP dividends from March 21, the date when it took control of the company, Rosneft’s press service said today by phone. Sechin also suggested setting dividends at a level similar to that of Rosneft, which pays out 25 percent of profit.
“The chances of getting a dividend for last year have sharply decreased,” Stanislav Kopylov, who helps manage about $3 billion at UralSib Asset Management in Moscow and holds TNK-BP shares, said by phone. “Dividends might be zero.”
Rosneft became the world’s largest publicly traded oil producer by output in March when it closed its $55 billion acquisition of TNK-BP from BP Plc (BP/) and a group of billionaires. TNK-BP Holding is the traded unit of TNK-BP. Rosneft’s decision not to buy out minority stakes, followed by a move to borrow money from the company and end its dividend policy, sent TNK-BP Holding’s shares tumbling the most on record March 26.
Investors including Templeton Emerging Markets Group and Prosperity Capital Management Ltd., which manages about $4 billion of Russian assets, said at the time Rosneft was putting Russia’s reputation at risk.
“Sechin’s statement sounds negative for the minorities,” Ildar Davletshin, an analyst at Renaissance Capital, said by phone from Moscow. “Most likely, last year’s profit won’t be distributed among minority shareholders.”
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