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Petrobras: Left, right-aligned

Pitching Petrobras will now demand military precision.

Joaquim Silva e Luna. Photo: Reuters

The market was spooked when Brazil’s president Jair Bolsonaro installed an army general as chief executive of state-controlled Petrobras.

The appointment of general Joaquim Silva e Luna gave rise to fears that the oil company would reverse its course on a market-based formula for pricing petrol and diesel.

Bankers also fretted over the loss of one of the country’s leading sources of business after Petrobras’s vigorous policy of streaming operations – spinning off businesses or putting them up for sale.

Silva e Luna’s first comments eased investors’ fears somewhat. He said he would seek to “reconcile the interests of consumers and shareholders, and seek to reduce volatility, without disrespecting international parity”.

Petrobras shares rallied by 6% during the subsequent trading session.

To the letter

However, while Silva e Luna’s swapping of camouflage fatigues for a business suit is off to a smooth start, there are signs that parts of the military man will remain.

A leaked missive stressed the absolute need that “any document delivered to the General must be formatted in the Century Gothic font, size 16, with justified paragraphs”.


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