BP concludes that the threshold for individual claimant future losses should be reduced from $500,000 to $100,000. "It must be recognized, however, that not all claimants will face the same -- or indeed, any -- risk of future loss," BP argues in asking for a new methodology with a lower threshold calibrated to actual risk of future loss. The company also contends that if future losses turn out to be higher, there is a mechanism in place to compensate claimants that does not require the aggressive methodology of future losses being employed now by the oil spill claims fund.

In addition to BP, Anadarko Petroleum ( APC) and Transocean ( RIG) could be liable for oil spill damages, though both companies have argued to date that BP was grossly negligent and should pay all oil-spill liabilities. Anadarko owns 25% of the Macondo well and 25% of the potential liability. Any potential liability for Halliburton ( HAL), which completed the faulted cement work on the deep sea well, remains undetermined.

BP shares were trading close to flat on Thursday morning.The only stock among those associated with the oil spill not trading close to flat on Thursday morning was Anadarko, up by 1% as the energy sector as a whole declined marginally early on Thursday.

-- Written by Eric Rosenbaum from New York.

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