BP'S first quarter earnings beat analyst expectations with the effect of the oil price slump looking to have been overestimated
BP has said that replacement cost profits - the industry's preferred measure - in the first quarter slumped to $2.1bn, a 39pc decline on the same period last year amid steep falls in the price of crude.
However, the results were ahead of analyst expectations which had forecast that the oil giant's profits would be just $1.2bn.
Bob Dudley, the group chief executive of BP, said: "We are resetting and rebalancing BP to meet the challenges of a possible period of sustained lower prices. Our results today reflect both this weaker environment and the actions we are taking in response.
"We are continuing to progress our planned divestment programme, we are resetting our level of capital spending, and we are addressing costs through focusing on simplification and efficiency throughout BP."