Since the start of 2021, oil has surged from $50 per barrel – around the price Chevron needs to cover both its dividend and capital expenditures – to over $100.

Oil and gas producers have enjoyed swelling profits over this period, enabling many of them to significantly improve their financial strength following a historically difficult year in 2020.

Chevron is no exception. The oil major’s net debt to capital ratio, or gearing, has improved from 22.5% a year ago to just 10.8% today. Gearing measures the proportion of a company’s financing that is from debt (net of cash) rather than equity.