BP gets “wake-up call” and $32 billion in spill charges

BP Plc’s newly named chief executive on Tuesday called the Gulf oil spill a “wake-up call” for the entire industry as the company tallied up its losses and disclosed two U.S. investigations.

Bob Dudley, who will replace gaffe-prone Tony Hayward as chief executive on October 1, said safety would be among his highest priorities as the first American to lead BP tries to refurbish the British oil company’s battered reputation.

Image repair may become even tougher after BP said it would offset the cost of the spill against its taxes, costing U.S. taxpayers almost $10 billion.

BP reported a second-quarter loss of $17 billion, including $32 billion in charges related to the oil spill, the largest in U.S. history. It also announced plans to sell $30 billion in assets over the next 18 months to help cover its liabilities.

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