Shares of Brazilian Oil Giant Petrobras Spike Due to Reports of CEO Resignation
February 4, 2015 By Staff
Top Story — Shares of the Brazilian oil giant Petrobras on Tuesday soared by more than 15 percent — the company’s most significant one-day jump since 1999 — following newspaper reports that President Dilma Rousseff will replace the company’s chief executive officer. Petrobras, which is partially state-run, is currently embroiled in a corruption scandal alleged to involve billions of dollars and key members of Rousseff’s Worker’s Party.
Maria das Graças Foster, a long-time associate of Rousseff, met with the president in private and agreed to step down at the end of February from her role as CEO of Petrobras, according to a report published by Brazilian daily Folha de São Paulo on Tuesday. The report sent company shares shooting up by 15.5 percent in São Paulo, closing at 10 reais — the largest one-day jump in 16 years.
Rousseff administration officials acknowledged that the president met with the Petrobras CEO on Tuesday at the presidential palace in Brasilia, but declined to comment on what Rousseff and Foster discussed. Petrobras representatives turned down requests for comment, and Folha de São Paulo did not disclose its source for the report.
The president has been under intense pressure to overhaul the embattled oil company, after a massive corruption scheme involving Petrobras and the ruling Workers’ Party first came to light in Brazilian media. According to investigators, at least $3.7 billion — and possibly more than $28 billion — were diverted over years of systematic bribery, kickback schemes and price-fixing. Over 20 executives have been arrested since police went public with their investigation.
Headlines from the Western Hemisphere
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