Updates from BP, Ocado and BG Group

Ocado makes its first annual profit while BP is hit by depressed oil prices and capacity anxiety

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savings, tax, stockmarket, pensions, cash, investment FTSE 100, BP, Ocado, BG GroupStock markets were broadly positive on Tuesday with the FTSE 100 up 33 points to 6,782.5, a 0.49% lift. By far the biggest gainer was Tullow Oil, soaring more than 9% to 399p as Brent crude rose as much as $55 a barrel, easing capacity concerns. CRH shares pushed 7.1% ahead while Sainsbury's shares also climbed strongly, up 4.6%% to 267p. The biggest loser was from easyJet, sinking 6.4% to 1742p.

In the US the Dow Jones gained more than 196 points to 17,361, up 1.1%, partly down to the jump in oil prices and consequent gains in oil shares from Chevron and Mobil.

We stay with oil because the big news this morning is from BP, struggling from capacity stress. BP says it made $2.2bn in the last quarter of 2014 compared to $2.8bn a year ago, thanks to the clip in oil revenues. Replacement profit for BP was $8,073 million, compared with $23,681 million.

All amounts relating to the Gulf of Mexico oil spill, it says, have been treated as non-operating items, with a net pre-tax charge of $477 million for the quarter and $819 million for the full year.

"We expect," says the oil giant, "full-year underlying production in 2015 to be broadly flat with 2014. We expect first-quarter 2015 reported production to be higher than the fourth quarter."

We move onto gas exploration playerBG Group. For the full year, total earnings sink to $1051m, reflecting non-cash post-tax impairments of $5928m it says. Business performance EPS is down 8% to 118.4 cents while total EPS sinks 30.8 cents. Fourth quarter operating profits plummet 14% to $1,224m.

The sharp deterioration in commodity prices in the second half of the year has, it says, led the company to recognise "significant asset impairment charges in the fourth quarter".

"In the new environment," the company says, "we are well placed to manage the downturn as we are reaching the end of a high capital expenditure cycle and will continue to add further production in 2015 from Brazil and Australia."

Lastly, Ocado has reported a 15.3% hike in gross sales to £972.4m for the full year. Earnings before interest and taxation climbs 56.3% to £71.6m compared to £45.8m. Overall, it claims its first annual profit since it commenced life in 2000.

Active customers increased to 453,000 (2013: 385,000), but with lower growth in overall marketing spend says Ocado. Average basket in period was £112.25 (2013: £113.53).

The broader grocery market, says Ocado boss Tim Steiner, "was characterised by intense competition with minimal growth in the segment, declining supermarket store sales, competitive price activity and cautious consumer spending, we continued to grow ahead".

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