Oil fuels economic activity and global movement, and so it is only natural that it finds itself in the crosshairs of the Covid-19 crisis. As oil demand has plummeted amid national lockdowns around the world, so have prices. Brent crude hit multidecade lows of less than $20 a barrel last month, when US prices turned negative $40 over storage concerns as facilities begin to brim.

Now oil and gas majors are slashing expenditure by as much as 30%, cementing capital discipline they have been practising for a while. This comes as investors increasingly abandon the sector over low returns and mounting environmental concerns...

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