BP raised its dividend by 4% on Tuesday and said it would start a share buyback programme worth $1.4 billion thanks to an improving outlook for its business on higher oil and gas prices.

The UK supermajor reported second-quarter underlying profits of $2.8 billion, up from a loss of $6.68 billion a year ago when the initial months of the Covid-19 pandemic hit demand for oil and gas.

BP said that confidence in its the outlook for its business and in its balance sheet was in part behind a decision to increase the second-quarter dividend by 4% to 5.46