ConocoPhillips Splitting Up


ConocoPhillips (NYSE:COP) has surprised the market with its decision to split its operations into two. The third biggest U.S. integrated oil company plans to separate its upstream oil and gas exploration and production unit from its downstream refining division into two standalone, publicly traded corporations.

The spin-off, which is subject to market conditions, regulatory approvals and the receipt of a U.S. Internal Revenue Service ruling that endorses its planned tax-free status, is expected to take effect in the first half of 2012.

The move will result in the creation of the largest refining company in the U.S. (with a capacity of 2.4 million barrels per day) and the largest exploration and production player based on oil and gas reserves.


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