Profit up at Brazil’s Petrobras on oil prices, asset sales

Brazil’s Petrobras tells profit rose 56 percent in first quarter of the year as the state-controlled oil company is beginning to emerge from a massive corruption scandal.

Petrobras told Tuesday it recorded net profit of 6.96 billion reais ($ 1.94 billion) in the January-to-March period, compared to 4.45 billion reais in the same period last year. Higher oil prices and asset sales contributed to the increase.

Petrobras is at the center of the sprawling corruption investigation known as Operation Car Wash. Researchers tell building companies rigged the bidding process for Petrobras contracts and overcharged the oil company. Politician and executives received bribes and bribes from the padded prices.

The company reported a net loss in 2017, largely because of payments to settle lawsuits related to the corruption and outstanding debts.

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