Bob Dudley

BP earnings disappoint as it cuts costs, investment

Oil producer BP's earnings rose less than expected in the fourth quarter, as it sought to adapt to low energy prices with cost cuts, asset sales and a pullback in investment plans.

A key measure of net income, the underlying replacement cost profit, rose to $400 million from $196 million in the same period last year. That missed analyst forecasts for $540 million, as surveyed by data provider FactSet. The profit measure, which excludes fluctuations in the value of inventories, is the industry's preferred gauge of earnings.

Shares in BP fell 2.6 percent to 464.25 pence in London after the release of the figures.

Oil companies have been cutting costs and selling...