Fri, Sep. 11, 11:41 AM
- Royal Dutch Shell (RDS.A, RDS.B) has launched its first FPSO in the Gulf of Mexico, with the massive ship bound for the company’s deepwater Stones prospect ~200 miles southwest of New Orleans.
- Shell says the floating oil production, storage and offloading vessel will be the deepest of its kind in the world, operating in 9,500 ft. of water.
- The FPSO will first draw oil from two wells at a peak production of 50K bbl/year, and Shell plans to add six additional wells; the company expects to start operating early next year.
- Despite weak crude oil prices, few expect drilling to slow in the Gulf any time soon, with several large projects already in the works.
Wed, Sep. 9, 2:43 PM
- Royal Dutch Shell (RDS.A, RDS.B) CEO Ben van Beurden has told investors privately that only “something cataclysmic” - i.e., "if people stopped using energy" - could derail the company's planned takeover of BG Group (OTCPK:BRGXF, OTCQX:BRGYY), WSJ reports.
- The episode is among the latest attempts by top Shell execs to sell investors worried that the deal may fall through; BG shares trade at a discount to the Shell cash and share offer, concerns that Australian and Chinese regulators could set high hurdles and, more broadly, that the persistently low oil prices could yet lead Shell to rethink the merger are dampening sentiment.
- The gap between the price of BG shares and the Shell cash and shares offer has widened over the past two weeks to an average of 16% from ~12% following the April 8 deal announcement.
- Most analysts have praised the logic of the deal and continue to believe it will be completed.
Wed, Sep. 9, 9:17 AM
- Royal Dutch Shell (RDS.A, RDS.B) says it is canceling its Louisiana-to-Texas Westward Ho pipeline after years of delays, reductions in scope and after other new pipelines began flowing.
- The line was proposed in 2011 at a top capacity of 900K bbl/day to move Gulf of Mexico and imported crudes from the St. James, La., oil hub to Houston, but waning shipper interest eventually caused a reduction in plans.
- Shell did not elaborate on its decision to cancel the pipeline, and has not announced results of the latest open season.
Sat, Sep. 5, 8:25 AM
- ConocoPhillips (NYSE:COP) says it could support a United Nations climate change agreement if it met its own policy principles, including creating a "level playing field" among energy sources and between countries, and avoiding technology mandates.
- COP's partial endorsement comes as pressure grows on U.S. oil majors to join European peers including Shell (RDS.A, RDS.B), BP, Total (NYSE:TOT) and Statoil (NYSE:STO) who backed UN climate negotiations and a global carbon pricing system to reduce carbon emissions.
- COP and U.S. peers such as Exxon (NYSE:XOM) and Chevron (NYSE:CVX) face competing demands from green and investor activist groups as well as industry lobby groups worried that a UN deal will call for a total phase-out of fossil fuels.
Fri, Sep. 4, 11:29 AM
- Gazprom (OTCPK:OGZPY) signs a shareholder agreement with its European partners on the development of the second phase of the Nord Stream gas pipeline system in the Baltic Sea to increase gas supplies to the European Union, moving forward on an expansion previously opposed by EU authorities.
- The project would be developed by a new company in which Gazprom holds a 51% stake; Royal Dutch Shell (RDS.A, RDS.B), E.ON (OTCQX:EONGY), OMV (OTC:OMVJF) and BASF (OTCQX:BASFY) each would get a 10% stake and ENGIE (OTCPK:ENGIY) the remaining 9%.
- Under the proposed expansion, two more lines would be added to the existing network running to the German coast, bringing annual net aggregate capacity to 1.9T cf of natural gas.
- Earlier: BASF, Gazprom to complete asset swap deal
- Earlier: YPF, Gazprom sign deal to develop gas projects in Argentina
Thu, Sep. 3, 7:58 AM
- Australia's antitrust regulator says it is delaying a decision on clearing Royal Dutch Shell's (RDS.A, RDS.B) $US70B takeover of BG Group (OTCPK:BRGXF, OTCQX:BRGYY), signalling it has reservations about the potential impact on gas supply.
- The regulator was expected to announce a decision on the deal today, but in a notice on its website says the date had been pushed back to Sept. 17 to allow additional time to consider the proposal.
- The proposed merger has raised worries among industrial energy users along Australia's east coast that the availability and choice of gas supplies will be further restricted.
- Australia and China are the two regulatory hurdles yet to be cleared after the European Union’s top antitrust regulator approved the deal unconditionally yesterday.
Wed, Sep. 2, 6:26 PM
- Royal Dutch Shell (RDS.A, RDS.B) lifts the force majeure on exports of Bonny Light crude oil in Nigeria after re-opening two key supply pipelines shut last week because of leaks and sabotage.
- Separately, Shell has resumed drilling of an exploratory well in the Chukchi Sea off Alaska, and says work is "going well" despite recent stormy weather that caused the company to halt operations for a few days.
- Also, CEO Ben van Beurden says Shell's takeover of BG Group, approved today by the European Commission, will boost profitability at a time when oil prices could be set to stay low for a sustained period.
Wed, Sep. 2, 12:33 PM
- A Dutch court rules that Royal Dutch Shell (RDS.A, RDS.B) and Exxon Mobil (NYSE:XOM) must compensate homeowners for a drop in house prices caused by earthquakes linked to production at the Groningen gas field.
- The ruling specifies that homeowners do not have do demonstrate their property has suffered physical damage, but only that its value has been affected by its location in the quake area.
- The ruling could open the door to a wave of compensation claims against the companies, which operate the field through a joint venture which so far has set aside €1.2B ($1.4B) in part to compensate homeowners for damages to their property.
Wed, Sep. 2, 9:04 AM
- Royal Dutch Shell's (RDS.A, RDS.B) proposed merger with BG Group (OTCPK:BRGXF, OTCQX:BRGYY) has received unconditional clearance from the European Commission.
- The European Union’s top antitrust regulator concluded after a brief investigation that the deal would not allow Shell to influence prices for oil and natural gas, and that the markets would remain competitive after the transaction.
- U.S. and Brazil antitrust authorities approved the deal in June; the deal still needs approval by China and Australia.
Tue, Sep. 1, 7:26 AM
- BG Group (OTCPK:BRGXF, OTCQX:BRGYY), which is being acquired by Royal Dutch Shell (RDS.A, RDS.B), has put up for sale its 22.2% stake in the huge Thai Bongkot offshore gas field valued at ~$1.2B, Reuters reports.
- The move would represent the first major asset sale by BG since Shell agreed to acquire the company in April.
- Thailand accounted for ~6% of BG's global gas production in 2014.
Mon, Aug. 31, 2:46 PM
- Newly released documents reveal a multitude of problems with anti-pollution equipment and a botched fire drill earlier this year on separate Shell-contracted (RDS.A, RDS.B) Arctic drillships before beginning an exploratory oil well in the Chukchi Sea.
- The records shed light on separate problems on Noble Corp.'s (NYSE:NE) Discoverer drillship when it pulled into Hawaii waters in April on its way to Washington state, and the Transocean (NYSE:RIG) Polar Pioneer, which was moored in Seattle and being prepared for its Arctic mission in May.
- Environmental groups seized on the findings, with Greenpeace saying the "repeated failures in basic readiness tests show that when things go wrong in the Arctic ocean, it will be a disaster."
Fri, Aug. 28, 6:38 PM
- The silver lining for integrated energy companies during the oil price rout - refining - shows signs of fading, as analysts and executives eye prospects for lower refining profits in H2 of this year as summer gasoline consumption eases, WSJ reports.
- Jefferies analysts warn that “signs of weakness have appeared more broadly" for refiners, citing average global refining margins that contracted 15% last week.
- Refining profits are not expected to crash as oil prices have, and major oil firms’ downstream businesses likely will continue to perform reasonably well as weak oil prices and rising consumption aid their performance.
- But headwinds are building, especially in Europe: Stocks of gasoline and diesel are near record highs in northwest Europe, according to the IEA, and European refiners that still suffer from overcapacity in many markets are now facing new competitors.
- The prospect of reduced refining profits portends just how bad life could get for major companies such as Exxon Mobil (NYSE:XOM), Royal Dutch Shell (RDS.A, RDS.B), BP and Total (NYSE:TOT) as they cope with the continuing plunge in crude oil prices, according to the report.
Fri, Aug. 28, 5:47 PM
- Gale-force winds and high seas battering Alaska’s northern coastline have forced Royal Dutch Shell (RDS.A, RDS.B) to temporarily stop exploratory oil drilling in the Arctic Ocean.
- Shell says the Transocean Polar Pioneer, which has been boring a well in the Chukchi Sea since July 30, stopped operations more than a day ago in anticipation of the inclement weather, and is safely anchored over the well.
- A separate Shell-contracted rig, the Noble Discoverer, which was not actively drilling, has left the area.
- It is unclear how quickly Shell might be able to resume its operations, though weather forecasts show winds dying down over the weekend.
Thu, Aug. 27, 6:57 PM
- Royal Dutch Shell's (RDS.A, RDS.B) Nigerian unit declares force majeure on Bonny Light crude oil exports after shutting down two key pipelines in the country due to a leak and theft.
- A leak was reported earlier this week on the Trans Niger Pipeline, which has the capacity to carry ~180K bbl/day of crude, and Shell then closed the Nembe Creek Trunkline to remove crude theft points.
- Theft is rampant in Nigeria's oil industry, and Shell has been forced several times over the past year to close its pipelines to remove theft points or clean up oil spills.
Tue, Aug. 25, 6:29 PM
- The global market selloff and plunging oil prices have increased fears that some of this year’s largest takeover deals are at risk of falling apart, including Royal Dutch Shell’s (RDS.A, RDS.B) ~$70B offer for BG Group (OTCPK:BRGXF, OTCQX:BRGYY), Financial Times reports.
- Over the past week, the gap between the agreed price of several takeovers and the market price of the target companies’ shares has widened, which usually is interpreted as a signal of declining confidence that the transaction will complete as planned.
- Bets on the outcome of Shell’s deal represented the biggest trades being made by so-called event-driven hedge funds in Europe, at least one broker tells FT.
- Another deal spread to reach its widest level this week was that between Halliburton’s (NYSE:HAL) $35B offer for Baker Hughes (NYSE:BHI) and the target group’s market value.
Fri, Aug. 21, 1:31 PM
- WTI crude dips below $40 for the first time since 2009 on major concerns over demand from China and a Baker Hughes report indicating producers increased their rig count for the 5th straight week.
- WTI crude traded as low as $39.86.
- Oil majors are down slightly more than broad market averages on the day. Notable decliners include Exxon Mobil (NYSE:XOM) -1.4%, Chevron (NYSE:CVX) -2.5%, Royal Dutch Shell (NYSE:RDS.A) -2.7%, Phillips 66 (NYSE:PSX) -4.5%, and ConocoPhillips -2.1%.
- Related ETFs: USO, OIL, UCO, UWTI, SCO, BNO, DBO, DWTI, DTO, USL, DNO, OLO, SZO, OLEM
Other News & PR