Should You Consider BP Stock?

With shares of BP (NYSE:BP) trading around $42, is BP an OUTPERFORM, WAIT AND SEE, or STAY AWAY? Let’s analyze the stock with the relevant sections of our CHEAT SHEET investing framework:

T = Trends for a Stock’s Movement

BP is an integrated oil and gas company. The firm provides its customers with fuel for transportation, energy for heat and light, lubricants, and the petrochemicals products used to make items like paints, clothes, and packaging. It operates in two business segments: exploration and production, and refining and marketing. BP provides energy products to consumers and companies worldwide. Without the oil and gas products provided, many consumers and businesses would not be able to operate on a daily basis.

BP is due to begin the second phase of its trial regarding the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. BP could be facing fines between $2.7 billion and $18 billion depending on how much oil is determined to have leaked from the spill and whether the company is found guilty of gross negligence. According to a report from The New York Times, the government is accusing BP of dumping 4.2 million barrels of oil into the Gulf over 87 days, but BP will argue it was only about 2.45 million barrels. This phase of the trial will also scrutinize whether BP was properly prepared for the spill and whether the company acted quickly enough after the explosion that caused it.

T = Technicals on the Stock Chart Are Mixed

BP stock struggled to make significant progress in the last several years as it still looks to recover from its 2010 oil spill. The stock is currently trading near yearly mid-prices and looks poised to continue the same path. Analyzing the price trend and its strength can be done using key simple moving averages. What are the key moving averages? The 50-day (pink), 100-day (blue), and 200-day (yellow) simple moving averages. As seen in the daily price chart below, BP is trading between its key averages, which signal neutral price action in the near-term.


(Source: Thinkorswim)

Taking a look at the implied volatility (red) and implied volatility skew levels of BP options may help determine if investors are bullish, neutral, or bearish.

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Implied Volatility (IV)

30-Day IV Percentile

90-Day IV Percentile

BP Options




What does this mean? This means that investors or traders are buying a very significant amount of call and put options contracts as compared to the last 30 and 90 trading days.

Put IV Skew

Call IV Skew

October Options



November Options



As of today, there is an average demand from call buyers or sellers and low demand by put buyers or high demand by put sellers, all neutral to bullish over the next two months. To summarize, investors are buying a very significant amount of call and put option contracts and are leaning neutral to bullish over the next two months.

On the next page, let’s take a look at the earnings and revenue growth rates and the conclusion.

E = Earnings Are Mixed Quarter-Over-Quarter

Rising stock prices are often strongly correlated with rising earnings and revenue growth rates. Also, the last four quarterly earnings announcement reactions help gauge investor sentiment on BP’s stock. What do the last four quarterly earnings and revenue growth (Y-O-Y) figures for BP look like and more importantly, how did the markets like these numbers?

2013 Q2

2013 Q1

2012 Q4

2012 Q3

Earnings Growth (Y-O-Y)





Revenue Growth (Y-O-Y)





Earnings Reaction





BP has seen rising earnings and mixed revenue figures over the last four quarters. From these numbers, the markets have mostly been pleased with BP’s recent earnings announcements.

P = Average Relative Performance Versus Peers and Sector

How has BP stock done relative to its peers, Chevron (NYSE:CVX), Exxon Mobil (NYSE:XOM), Royal Dutch Shell (NYSE:RDSA), and sector?



Exxon Mobil

Royal Dutch Shell


Year-to-Date Return






In a weak sector, BP has been an average relative performer, year-to-date.


BP is an oil and gas company that supplies energy products and services worldwide. The company is still involved in a trial regarding the 2010 Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill. The stock has struggled to make significant progress in recent years and is currently trading near mid-prices for the year. Over the last four quarters, earnings are rising and revenues are mixed which has mostly produced pleased investors. Relative to its peers and sector, BP has been an average year-to-date performer in a weak sector. WAIT AND SEE what BP does in coming quarters.

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