BP (3)

Struggling oil giant BP has announced plans to cut a further 3,000 jobs, just weeks after announcing 4,000 job cuts. 

The latest cuts come after the company reported that its underlying profits for 2015 more than halved. The oil giant said profits were down 51% to $5.9 billion (£4.1bn), compared with $12.1bn in 2014.

Focusing on the company’s final quarter, underlying profits dropped significantly from $2.2bn in 2014 to just $196 million. Its upstream business – which includes exploration and production – reported a $728m loss. The 4,000 job cuts announced in January are to come in that area of the business.

But the latest job cuts will come in its upstream business, which includes refined oil products.

Despite the dramatic fall in profits and 7,000 job cuts announced in the past month, BP chief executive Bob Dudley said the company is making good progress.

He said: “We are continuing to move rapidly to adapt and rebalance BP for the changing environment.”

Unsurprisingly, oil prices are at the centre of BP’s plunging profits. During the final quarter of 2014, when BP posted a profit of $2.2bn, oil prices were at just below $80 per barrel. In stark contrast, prices fell to around $44 per barrel in the final three months of 2015.