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Opinion
Liam Denning

Conoco's 2020s Plan Is to Embrace the FUD

The oil company has refined fear, uncertainty and doubt into something useful.

Ryan Lance, chairman and chief executive officer of ConocoPhillips Inc.

Ryan Lance, chairman and chief executive officer of ConocoPhillips Inc.

Photographer: Bloomberg/Bloomberg

ConocoPhillips knows how to please a crowd, even one as shrunken and beaten-down as energy investors. By Tuesday lunchtime, as Conoco’s analyst day was wrapping up in Houston, it was the only big U.S. oil and gas stock flashing green, what with oil prices slipping almost 3%.

This says a lot about why Conoco’s message resonates: It comes with a hefty dollop of FUD.