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Obama Urged To 'punish' Bp With $100Bn Action

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http://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/news/obama-urged-to-punish-bp-with-100bn-action-1998853.html

Senior US politicians are pushing President Barack Obama to seek $100bn in damages against BP for the Gulf of Mexico oil spill in an attempt to kill the company.

If such an action were to be taken and won, the Ftse 100 flagbearer would almost certainly collapse into bankruptcy. Many prominent US figures would welcome this as suitable punishment for the environmental devastation off the Louisiana coast.

The news will heap further pressure on an embattled board, which meets tomorrow to decide whether to suspend dividend payments, vital to UK pension funds, as up to £1.8bn goes out to investors each quarter.

On Wednesday, BP bosses will meet with Mr Obama, who has called on BP to suspend dividend payments while it struggles to keep the oil spill under control. The clean-up costs are already approaching £1bn, less than two months after the explosion that killed 11 people. Most analysts have forecast that the disaster could cost BP around $20bn as a worst-case scenario, though Credit Suisse has suggested as much as $37bn.

It is understood that a group of senior congressmen from Mr Obama's Democratic Party are pushing the President to sue for up to $100bn. These would include punitive, as well as physical damages, effectively representing a punishment to the company and a broader industry deterrent to breaching safety regulations – even though it is not yet clear that BP failed to meet its responsibilities.

The congressmen are understood to have taken their lead from a 1987 case involving Texaco, which was forced into bankruptcy after a $10.53bn damages claim was awarded against the company, even though that amount was later severely cut. Rival Pennzoil made the claim, believing it had a binding agreement to buy Getty Oil before discovering that Texaco had beaten the company to the prize.

A source close to the politicians said: "There are US congressmen who understand the heartbeat of the Obama administration that are looking at [Texaco]. There is a real chance – 30 per cent, perhaps a bit more – that BP cannot survive."

Looks like pension funds are going to have a huge chunk taken out of them.

Why the hell isn't Cameron bringing this up. Although could there be a legal suit against the US govt by BP share holders if the company was forced into bankruptcy because the regulator didn't do there job?

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http://www.independe...on-1998853.html

Looks like pension funds are going to have a huge chunk taken out of them.

Why the hell isn't Cameron bringing this up.  Although could there be a legal suit against the US govt by BP share holders if the company was forced into bankruptcy because the regulator didn't do there job?

I'd say this is a clear sign that the US is about to collapse.  Its like a last desperate attempt by a bankrupt to stay afloat.

Seriously if this were to happen expect a massive trade war and foreign capital to exit the US at record speed.  We'll be at $3 to the £ before you know it.

Besides, any such case would take years and it is pretty clear Obama will be out of office by then.

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The hotheads in congress show why power cannot rest with them. BP is the largest oil producer in America, and that likely makes it the largest capital investor in America. Trying to bankrupt the company would have a catastrophic impact on investment in America by global corporations.

Its a good first test for Cameron to see if he can play some hardball politics.

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The hotheads in congress show why power cannot rest with them.  BP is the largest oil producer in America, and that likely makes it the largest capital investor in America.  Trying to bankrupt the company would have a catastrophic impact on investment in America by global corporations.

Its a good first test for Cameron to see if he can play some hardball politics.

I agree 100%.

The US and Obama are making so much noise because they are weak.  The US doesn't have the technology to do this type of oil extraction and also needs the tax revenues. 

If BP gets screwed then lots of other companies will  simply decide to leave the US.  Firms like HP, Intel and IBM have been cutting US operations as they seek cheaper overseas labour, but if they felt their existence could be threatened by arbitrary Government action they'd probably do better to de-list from the US exchange and move their headquarters out of the US.

If the impression arises that investments are safer in place like China, India, Brazil and Vietnam than they are the US then the US is finished.

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The hotheads in congress show why power cannot rest with them. BP is the largest oil producer in America, and that likely makes it the largest capital investor in America. Trying to bankrupt the company would have a catastrophic impact on investment in America by global corporations.

Its a good first test for Cameron to see if he can play some hardball politics.

Spot on. Barry is showing his immaturity with this one.

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If the impression arises that investments are safer in place like China, India, Brazil and Vietnam than they are the US then the US is finished.

Thats a good way to look at it. Right now people are willing to have much lower returns in nations like the US which are considered to be safe to invest without arbitrary government action seizing the money. If the US became the same as other nations in that regard returns would have to adjust to developing world norms. Like 13% interest rates.

I think the US will have to put the lawyers in a box as well. Like all the lawsuits going after Toyota. That chilled investment in the US auto industry - which was already quite cold.

But considering most politicians are also lawyers it will be easier said than done.

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DC should just walk in, throw a "birth cert" on the table........tell "Barry" that he want the US to pick up the tab just we had to ref our banks.....then throw his boots on the table.....tell him to ensure a good polish.....Oh and sing a cheery song about an old man & a river.

Mike

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I'd say this is a clear sign that the US is about to collapse.  Its like a last desperate attempt by a bankrupt to stay afloat.

Seriously if this were to happen expect a massive trade war and foreign capital to exit the US at record speed.  We'll be at $3 to the £ before you know it.

Besides, any such case would take years and it is pretty clear Obama will be out of office by then.

With the oil spill fines does that go straight into govt coffers?

$20,000,000 if it is around 20,000 barrels a day spewing to the gulf then BP is running up a very nice tab for someone, if it's negligence than someone gets an even bigger pay day.

It's clear that there was no contingency plan from any of the oil firms about what to do if this happened.

There was no plan.

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Obama is starting to make Bush look like a good president, I doubt he would have taken all this moral posturing to the same degree.

If he really wanted to come across as a strong president then he would have supported B.P, they messed up and they may be liable for compensation, but right now the mess needs to be cleaned up and the leak plugged.

As others have said, he's a weak president with no sense of direction, so when Big Oil screws up he uses it as an opportunity to show that he's making all the tough decisions that need to be made. Without the B.P thing his presidency would be floundering.

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Obama is starting to make Bush like a good president, I doubt he would have taken all this moral posturing to the same degree.

If he really wanted to come across as a strong president then he would have supported B.P, they messed up and they may be liable for compensation, but right now the mess needs to be cleaned up and the leak plugged.

As others have said, he's a weak president with no sense of direction, so when Big Oil screws up he uses it as an opportunity to show that he's making all the tough decisions that need to be made. Without the B.P thing his presidency would be floundering.

Obama has been an idiot, he made promises over the spill he couldn't possible keep. Then he went all tough talking and has now created an even bigger problem for himself. I can't see too many US pension funds being happy if he bankrupts BP.

It will be interesting to see what happens if the relief wells fail, it will be abundantly clear about the risks being taken to keep the cars rolling. If the relief drilling does work will the regulators then state that all deep water oil drilling must have relief wells pre bored to say within 300m of the main well in case of problems? At least then it should only be a few days/weeks before the leak would be plugged.

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Guest sillybear2

Nobody would ever drill for anything in the US again if they went in for the kill, not even Exxon would risk its neck for such skewed risk/reward ratios, let alone smaller players.

I guess Obama will get a nice Christmas card from OPEC this year.

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With the oil spill fines does that go straight into govt coffers?

$20,000,000 if it is around 20,000 barrels a day spewing to the gulf then BP is running up a very nice tab for someone, if it's negligence than someone gets an even bigger pay day.

It's clear that there was no contingency plan from any of the oil firms about what to do if this happened.

There was no plan.

There can be no contingency plan. If you had all the preparations in place in case it happened it would push up the costs too much.

The US is only making noises about BP to distract from the fact that the companies responsible would actually be 100% US companies... with close links to the US government. Most Americans think BP is foreign. Damn those evil foreigners, polluting our shores.

As stated by many people here, if the US goes after BP for $100bn, the US as a country is toast, the whole oil industry will collapse in on itself in fear, pushing up oil prices to $10 a gallon and nuking what's left of the economy.

once the relief well is in place it will all be brushed under the carpet.

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If he treats BP like we treated the banks he should punish them by sending over 6 billion they can hand out in bonuses for a job well done.

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Without the $6billion they couldn't attract the best oil-spilling talent.

You know how it is though, one wrong move and they'll up sticks and drill for oil in Switzerland. And then where will be eh?

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If the relief drilling does work will the regulators then state that all deep water oil drilling must have relief wells pre bored to say within 300m of the main well in case of problems? At least then it should only be a few days/weeks before the leak would be plugged.

The problem with drilling relief wells as a preventative measure, is that a relief well is just as likely to blow-out as a real well - you're drilling the same rock, OK you're not aiming directly for the oil - but you may hit a pocket of gas connected to the oil reservoir, or your drilling may fracture the rock, etc. The rest of the well management is pretty similar - so you're just as likely to get a blow-out on the relief well. Then what do you do?

The result is a drastic increase in cost, and significantly higher accident risk rate - although the overall severity of such a spill may be less.

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Guest anorthosite

Nobody would ever drill for anything in the US again if they went in for the kill, not even Exxon would risk its neck for such skewed risk/reward ratios, let alone smaller players.

I guess Obama will get a nice Christmas card from OPEC this year.

hoff1.jpg

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  • 260 Brexit, House prices and Summer 2020

    1. 1. Including the effects Brexit, where do you think average UK house prices will be relative to now in June 2020?


      • down 5% +
      • down 2.5%
      • Even
      • up 2.5%
      • up 5%



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