Cheniere Energy (LNG +1.2%) reaches a tentative settlement with investors that would restrain executive compensation following shareholder litigation over pay practices that included CEO Charif Souki’s $142M compensation last year.
If approved, the accord would prohibit LNG from paying out any remaining shares it had authorized in a Feb. 2013 vote but hadn’t yet distributed to executives or employees; it would not require Souki or any employees to give up awards already received.
The agreement also would bar the company from seeking shareholder approval for any stock-based compensation before Jan. 1, 2017.
Westport Innovations (WPRT -3%) is lower after posting a lighter than expected Q3 loss but revenues fell 45% Y/Y and operating expenses rose 61%.
Deutsche Bank downgrades shares to Hold from Buy with an $8 price target, down from $12, seeing a weak oil price environment impacting near-term adoption of natural gas vehicles and uncertainty about timing of cash flow breakeven.
The firm expects shares to remain range-bound until seeing more evidence of EBITDA improvement or OEM/product announcements.
British Columbia and Alberta are banding together to push the Canadian government to let energy investors deduct costs of building liquefied natural gas shipping terminals and oil sands processing plants at the same rate as manufacturers.
LNG facilities are allowed depreciation rates of 8% while oil sands refineries and upgraders can apply a 25% rate, but manufacturers qualify for a 50% rate under a temporary policy introduced in 2007 that’s due to expire at the end of 2015.
Reclassification would help level the playing field with other countries, according to the BC LNG Developers Alliance, a group representing companies including Shell (RDS.A, RDS.B), Chevron (NYSE:CVX), BG Group (OTCQX:BRGYY, OTCPK:BRGXF) and Petronas.
It was "pipeline theater at its finest" when TransCanada (NYSE:TRP) officially filed its Energy East application to the National Energy Board yesterday - 30K pages in 68 binders in 11 boxes, with panels of top executives in Toronto and Quebec City to explain the benefits - Financial Post's Claudia Cattaneo writes.
The company pulled out all the stops "but that’s what it takes these days to get a pipeline approved [in] a social license obsessed world."
The 4,600 km pipeline would carry 1.1M bbl/day of crude from Alberta and Saskatchewan to refineries in Quebec and New Brunswick, and reduce Canada’s dependence on the U.S. oil market by enabling exports to Europe and the Far East.
Walter Energy (WLT -2.2%) opens sharply lower as BB&T downgrades shares to Underweight from Hold, believing WLT will run out of cash in the next 12 months and that the best alternative is to restructure with some cash on the balance sheet to exit as a stronger company.
BB&T says WLT needs a met coal price of ~$170/metric ton vs. the current $109.50spot price, making a restructuring "the only right choice."
Cowen cuts its price target to $3.50 from $5.50, saying better than expected Q3 results show WLT is managing reasonably well through the downturn but a met coal recovery is likely to be drawn out (Briefing.com).
Kinder Morgan (KMI, KMP) seeks a court order to stop Vancouver-area residents from blocking survey work for its Trans Mountain expansion project after protesters stopped crews from working all day Wednesday.
The injunction application is the latest in a bitter battle over KMI’s plans to expand the pipeline through Burnaby Mountain.
Chevron (NYSE:CVX) +1.2% premarket after reporting better than expected Q3 earnings, as lower crude prices boosted refinery operations and helping to offset lower oil and gas production.
Q3 earnings from the upstream segment (E&P), fell 8.7% Y/Y to $4.65B, but downstream earnings surged nearly fourfold to $1.39B as cheaper crude oil prices boosted refining margins.
Q3 production fell nearly 1% to 2.57M boe/day, as higher output from project ramp-ups in the U.S., Argentina, Brazil and Nigeria and improved reliability at Tengizchevroil were more than offset by normal field declines.
The results mirror those from Exxon, which earlier today also reported higher earnings but a drop in production.
Exxon Mobil (NYSE:XOM) +0.9% premarket after reporting better than expected Q3 earnings as strong refining performance offset falling oil prices and production.
Earnings in XOM’s E&P business fell 4.4% Y/Y to $6.42B, hurt by lower production, but refining and marketing earnings jumped 73% to $1.02B, helped by higher refining margins and volume; the chemicals unit posted a $1.2B profit, up 17%.
Oil and gas production fell 4.7% Y/Y - excluding the impact of the expiry of the Abu Dhabi onshore concession, production fell 1% - but XOM says it remains on track for full-year output of 4M boe/day.
Q3 capex fell 6.8% to $9.84B, while share repurchases totaled $3B.
Canadian Oil Sands (OTCQX:COSWF) reports Q3 net profit fell 65% Y/Y to C$0.18/share, citing lower revenue and foreign exchange-related losses.
Q3 sales volume rose to 87,787 bbl/day, up4% Y/Y, but average crude prices fell to C$102.58/bbl from C$112.55 a year earlier, and operating expenses rose to to C$47.73/bbl, up from $46.15.
Cuts its annual maximum output target to 100M barrels of oil, down from a previous 104M barrels and an initial forecast of up to 110M barrels.
Canadian Oil Sands owns a 37% stake in its main operating asset, Syncrude, with six other companies owning the remainder, including lead operator Exxon Mobil (NYSE:XOM) unit Imperial Oil (NYSEMKT:IMO) and Suncor Energy (NYSE:SU).