Shell Posts Record Profit Of $40 Billion And Hikes Dividend 15

European oil giant Shell (SHEL) has posted a record annual profit of $39.90 billion U.S. due to elevated crude prices and strong global energy demand.

The British oil major reported earnings of just under $40 billion U.S. for all of 2022, smashing its previous record annual profit of $28.4 billion U.S. set in 2008.

The 2022 profit more than doubled Shell’s 2021 profit of $19.29 billion U.S. Analysts had expected a full-year 2022 net profit of $38.3 billion U.S., according to Refinitiv data.

Shell also announced a $4 billion U.S. share buyback program, which is expected to be completed by the first-quarter of this year, and a 15% increase to its quarterly dividend.

Shell’s results follow historic annual earnings for U.S. oil majors ExxonMobil (XOM) and Chevron (CVX), with the largest oil and gas companies expected to rake in combined profits of nearly $200 billion U.S. for 2022.

The record profits have sparked calls for a windfall tax on Big Oil. However, oil executives have defended their profits and noted that they come after the energy market crashed in 2020 due to the global pandemic.

Shell’s stock is up 10% over the past year at $58.32 U.S. per share.