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Canadian oil firms fight back

The sector’s biggest companies staunched some of their losses across the second quarter, but the results still made for depressing reading

The Canadian oil patch performed much better than expected in the second quarter. Firms took swift and dramatic action in March and April to slash capital spending, and in many cases dividends, to protect their balance sheets. Despite a massive collapse in revenue, combined losses for the country’s five largest oil and gas producers—Canadian Natural Resources (CNRL), Suncor Energy, Cenovus Energy, Imperial Oil and Husky Energy—were less than a quarter of what they were in the first three months of the year. All five indicated plans to maintain capital spending discipline and low levels of drilling through to at least the end of this year, given continuing Covid-related market uncertainty,

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