Covid-19 drives oil companies to raise record debt to boost cash reserves

The world's top oil and gas companies locked in cheap borrowing rates to raise a record amount of debt in the second quarter of 2020 and boost cash reserves as a buffer against a collapse in revenues because of Covid-19. The dash for debt piles pressure on company balance sheets and the issue is particularly acute for BP and Royal Dutch Shell .

Already burdened by high levels of borrowing, they also face the disruption of a major shift towards renewables and low-carbon. The world's top seven energy firms - BP, Shell, Exxon.

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