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  • Thu, Oct. 13, 6:41 PM
    • North Dakota oil production dropped below 1M bbl/day in August for the first time in more than two years, as the state's higher-cost production continues to struggle relative to other parts of the U.S.
    • Production from North Dakota’s portion of the Williston Basin fell to 981K bbl/day in August, down 4.7% from July and the lowest since March 2014; the state's peak production, in December 2014, was more than 1.23M bbl/day.
    • Lynn Helms, director of the state’s Department of Mineral Resources, expects oil production to decline to a low of ~900K bbl/day by mid-2017 before recovering.
    • Companies with a presence in North Dakota's Bakken Shale include CLR, WLL, EOG, ERF, HK, HES, MRO, OAS, QEP, SM, STO, TPLM.
    | Thu, Oct. 13, 6:41 PM | 42 Comments
  • Wed, Sep. 28, 3:19 PM
    • The energy sector (XLE +4%) bursts to the top of the leaderboard after OPEC announces a planned production cut to 32.5M bbl/day at the informal OPEC meeting in Algiers.
    • Among individual energy stocks: XOM +3.8%, CVX +2.7%, RDS.A +2.8%, BP +3.4%, TOT +2.4%, PBR +4.5%, COP +6.4%, MRO +8%, MPC +1.4%, PSX +1.9%, VLO -0.1%, EOG +6.2%, PXD +6.4%, OXY +4.5%, DVN +7.9%, CLR +8.3%, APA +6.2%, NOV +8.1%, SLB +3.3%, BHI +3.6%, HAL +4.3%, KMI +3.4%, ENB +2.6%, EPD +1.9%, ETP +2.9%.
    | Wed, Sep. 28, 3:19 PM | 74 Comments
  • Tue, Sep. 13, 10:48 AM
    • U.S. and Oklahoma state officials are lowering by 22 the number of injection wells ordered to be shut in at an area where a 5.8-magnitude earthquake occurred on Sept. 3.
    • State officials say the 27 wastewater wells ordered to be shut compared with the shutdown of 37 wastewater injection wells announced within hours of the quake earlier this month, while the EPA ordered the shut-in of five wells in its area of jurisdiction, down from 17 shut-ins it announced earlier this month.
    • The mandatory shut-ins are expected to last at least six months and may become permanent, depending on new data that is collected.
    • PetroQuest Energy (NYSE:PQ) reportedly has been the only publicly traded U.S. company among the operators affected by regulators' orders.
    • Oklahoma's top oil and gas producers include CLR, CHK, DVN, MRO, NFX, XEC and SD.
    | Tue, Sep. 13, 10:48 AM | 4 Comments
  • Tue, Sep. 6, 12:39 PM
    • A backlash against fracking in Oklahoma could grow following this weekend's 5.6-magnitude, earthquake as the U.S. Geological Survey examines whether the record-breaking tremor was triggered by the underground disposal of wastewater from oil and gas production.
    • The USGS says it "cannot currently conclude whether or not this particular earthquake was caused by industrial-related, human activities. However, we do know that many earthquakes in Oklahoma have been triggered by wastewater fluid injection.”
    • “They are going to push the industry to come up with some permanent solutions,” says Michael Lynch of Strategic Energy & Economic Research. “It’s hard to believe Oklahoma would move to ban fracking, but I can see where they would say to people that they have to do something else with the wastewater."
    • PetroQuest Energy (PQ -3%) was ordered to shut four of its disposal wells in Oklahoma, and was the only publicly traded U.S. company among the operators affected by state regulators' orders to suspend a total of 37 wastewater disposal wells.
    • Oklahoma's leading oil and gas producers include CLR, CHK, DVN, MRO, NFX, XEC and SD.
    | Tue, Sep. 6, 12:39 PM | 51 Comments
  • Tue, Aug. 30, 6:52 PM
    • Earlier fears that some energy companies might not be able to secure new lines of credit because of the collapse in oil prices seem to be a thing of the past; in fact, banks are willing to lend but energy companies do not seem particularly eager to borrow, says Stifel's Daniel Guffy and his analyst team.
    • Banks have sought to work through the debt challenges in the energy end markets, as forcing a bankruptcy risks a liquidation that would not come close to recovering the loan value; banks seem willing to lend again as the fall redetermination begins, but E&P companies have little appetite to add leverage, although this could shift as E&P fundamentals improve, Stifel says.
    • Companies in Stifel's coverage that have chosen to take a defensive posture by reigning in capex and curbing growth to protect balance sheets and/or preserve liquidity include Buy-rated CRZO, EGN, NFX and XEC, as well as Hold-rated CLR, COG, CRK and PQ.
    | Tue, Aug. 30, 6:52 PM | 3 Comments
  • Thu, Aug. 18, 7:23 AM
    • Continental Resources (NYSE:CLR) announces it sold non-strategic properties in North Dakota and Montana for $222M to an undisclosed buyer.
    • The sale includes 68K net acres of leasehold primarily in western Williams County, North Dakota, and 12K net acres of leasehold in Roosevelt County, Montana.
    • The sale also includes net production of approximately 2.8K barrels of oil equivalent per day.
    • "This is our third sale of non-strategic assets this year, with total expected proceeds of more than $600 million. We plan to apply proceeds to reduce debt and strengthen our balance sheet," said CEO Harold Hamm.
    • Source: Press Release
    | Thu, Aug. 18, 7:23 AM | 6 Comments
  • Fri, Aug. 12, 2:31 PM
    • North Dakota's crude oil production fell 2% in June to 1.03M bbl/day, hitting its lowest level in more than two years.
    • The state's Department of Minerals Resources says production may already have dropped below 1M bbl/day and could take at least a year to recover if the level is breached.
    • But in a positive sign for the industry, the state says the breakeven price for oil production at its existing wells has slipped to $26/bbl, showing that existing production remains profitable for companies that have aggressively cut costs.
    • Companies with a presence in North Dakota's Bakken Shale include CLR, WLL, EOG, ERF, HK, HES, MRO, OAS, QEP, SM, STO, TPLM.
    | Fri, Aug. 12, 2:31 PM | 33 Comments
  • Wed, Aug. 3, 7:52 PM
    • Continental Resources (NYSE:CLR-1.4% AH after posting a slightly larger than expected Q2 loss on 43% lower revenues Y/Y.
    • CLR says Q2 net production totaled ~20M boe, or 219.3K boe/day, down 5% Q/Q and 3% lower Y/Y; the decline, as expected, was concentrated in the Bakken play, where CLR continues to increase its drilled but uncompleted well inventory.
    • CLR now expects FY 2016 production of 210K-220K boe/day, up 5K boe from previous guidance, and expects to exit the year at 195K-205K boe/day, also reflecting a 5K boe/increase; CLR also lowers guidance for production expense to $3.75-$4.25/boe, $0.50/boe lower than the previous range.
    • CLR also agrees to sell 29.5K acres of its non-core SCOOP holdings in Oklahoma to an undisclosed buyer for $281M; after the deal, CLR will retain ~384K net acres of leasehold in SCOOP.
    | Wed, Aug. 3, 7:52 PM
  • Wed, Aug. 3, 4:20 PM
    • Continental Resources (NYSE:CLR): Q2 EPS of -$0.18 misses by $0.01.
    • Revenue of $451.2M (-43.3% Y/Y) misses by $103.59M.
    • Press Release
    | Wed, Aug. 3, 4:20 PM
  • Tue, Aug. 2, 5:35 PM
  • Thu, Jul. 21, 5:48 AM
    • Fracker-in-chief? Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump is considering nominating Continental Resources (NYSE:CLR) CEO Harold Hamm as energy secretary if elected to the White House on Nov. 8.
    • Trump also spoke on the future of NATO. In his strongest remarks to date, he said the U.S. would only defend alliance members attacked by Russia after reviewing whether those nations "have fulfilled their obligations to us."
    | Thu, Jul. 21, 5:48 AM | 19 Comments
  • Mon, Jul. 18, 3:58 PM
    • Pioneer Natural Resources (PXD +0.1%), EP Energy (EPE +0.9%), Carrizo Oil & Gas (CRZO +2.8%), Sanchez Energy (SN +2.5%) and Synergy Resources (SYRG -0.1%) are all upgraded to Buy at KLR Group in advance of Q2 earnings reports.
    • At the same time, the firm downgrades Devon Energy (DVN -0.4%), Consol Energy (CNX -1.3%) and Continental Resources (CLR +0.4%) to Accumulate from Buy on valuation given their substantial share price appreciation over the past four months.
    • KLR expects the U.S. E&P industry's cost intensity to decline another 10% this year as capital spending is rationalized another 45%, but it anticipates spending ultimately will increase ~70% "assuming a substantive recovery in commodity prices."
    • The firm's new stock price targets are $218 for PXD, $6.50 for EPE, $49 for CRZO, $9 for SN, $9 for SYRG, $44 for DVN, $20 for CNX and $54 for CLR.
    | Mon, Jul. 18, 3:58 PM | 9 Comments
  • Wed, Jul. 13, 2:28 PM
    • Lower costs and improved productivity have enabled U.S. shale oil drillers to made major strides in adapting to lower crude prices, energy consultant Wood Mackenzie says.
    • Shale drillers have cut the costs of producing new supplies of oil by as much as 40% in the past two years by pushing for lower rates from the companies that provide rigs, pipes and other services.
    • Wood Mackenzie estimates that oil companies could make money in west Texas' Bone Spring and Wolfcamp tight oil plays with $37/bbl oil, the Eagle Ford Shale in south Texas could turn a profit at $48/bbl, the average breakeven price in North Dakota’s Bakken Shale is $58/bbl, while breakeven at Oklahoma’s SCOOP region is $35/bbl.
    • The report says the big winners will be incumbent operators in the key shale oil patches in the lower 48 U.S. states, such as in the Mid-Continent and Permian Basin, including U.S. independents such as EOG Resources (EOG -1.7%), Pioneer Natural Resources (PXD -2.1%), Continental Resources (CLR -2.1%) and Apache (APA -1.9%), as well as oil giants Exxon Mobil (XOM -0.5%) and Chevron (CVX -0.2%).
    | Wed, Jul. 13, 2:28 PM | 17 Comments
  • Thu, Jun. 30, 6:38 PM
    • The number of earthquakes in Oklahoma has fallen 25% YTD from a year ago, a decline attributed in part to actions by state regulators to restrict the oil and gas industry’s practice of pumping wastewater from its operations deep underground.
    • More than 2,700 temblors of magnitude 2.5 or higher occurred in Oklahoma last year, according to the U.S. Geological Survey; the state experienced 1,097 quakes of similar magnitude in the first six months of this year, down from ~1,400 over the same period in 2015.
    • Oklahoma's leading oil and gas producers include CLR, CHK, DVN, MRO, NFX and XEC.
    | Thu, Jun. 30, 6:38 PM | 31 Comments
  • Mon, Jun. 20, 2:25 PM
    • Marathon Oil (MRO +10.4%) powers higher after snapping up P-E-backed PayRock Energy for $888M, increasing its footprint in Oklahoma's prolific STACK oil play.
    • MRO expects internal rates of return for the new addition of 60%-80% before taxes at a WTI price of $50/bbl.
    • CEO Lee Tillman says MRO would ratchet up drilling activity if crude prices held above $50/bbl for a while, and that the Oklahoma oil region is profitable enough that it can compete for capital against the company’s other oil plays.
    • SunTrust analysts consider ~60% of Payrock’s position to be in the core STACK, and estimates the core acreage value at ~$15K/acre, which appears in line with recent transactions.
    • The firm also thinks MRO's move is good news for core STACK players Newfield Exploration (NFX +0.5%), Cimarex Energy (XEC +1.3%), Continental Resources (CLR +1.2%), Devon Energy (DVN +4.6%) and Chesapeake Energy (CHK +3.3%).
    | Mon, Jun. 20, 2:25 PM | 14 Comments
  • Thu, Jun. 16, 12:19 PM
    • North Dakota’s crude oil production fell by the largest amount ever for a single month, sinking 6.3% to 1.04M bbl/day in April from a revised 1.11M bbl/day in March.
    • The North Dakota Department of Mineral Resources cites low crude oil prices but also windy weather throughout much of the month, which delays the fracking of wells, adding that it expects the slide to accelerate through May and into the summer.
    • There are 28 drilling rigs currently active in the state, up from 27 in May which was the fewest since July 2005; at its peak, North Dakota had 218 rigs drilling in May 2012.
    • Companies with a Bakken presence include: CLR, ERF, EOG, HK, HES, MRO, OAS, QEP, SM, STO, TPLM, WLL.
    | Thu, Jun. 16, 12:19 PM | 42 Comments