The world has a new top company, but only in terms of market capitalisation. Shares in China’s biggest oil and gas producer, PetroChina,almost tripled on the first day they were traded on the Shanghai stock market – making it worth around one trillion dollars or 690 billion euros.
It means each PetroChina share is worth three times a share of its US rival Exxon Mobil, even though it has less than a third of Exxon’s turnover.
Chairman Jiang Jiemin said: “Offering the shares for sale on the mainland gives domestic investors opportunities to share the outcome of PetroChina’s fast growth and will help accelerate our business development and improve the company’s overall strength and market influence.”
However, analysts expressed concern about the soaring share price. They warned that it is too high when PetroChina’s corporate fundamentals are taken into consideration.
In terms of earnings, it is not even one of the top 50 companies in the world, but on paper it is worth more than Exxon Mobil and General Electric put together.