Fri, Feb. 20, 12:44 PM
- EOG Resources (EOG -3.1%) is downgraded to Neutral from Buy with a $102 price target, down from $108, at UBS after EOG cut its 2015 capex by 40% and likely leading to flat Y/Y production likely.
- While UBS believes EOG's ability to rapidly bring on deferred well completions will enable it to return to greater than 10% oil growth in 2016 and 7% company-wide growth, the firm still cuts its 2015 and 2016 cash flow/share estimates by ~15% to a respective $7 and $8.40 following the company's guidance.
- Similarly, Citigroup cut its rating on EOG to Neutral from Buy with a $96 target, and Macquarie lowered shares to Neutral from Outperform also with a $96 target.
Thu, Feb. 19, 2:49 PM
- EOG Resources (EOG -0.9%) has recouped most of its big early losses following its worse than expected Q4 results and a scaled-back outlook that would mark the first time in years the company's crude and natural gas output does not jump more than 10%.
- EOG told analysts on its earnings conference call this morning that it is "intentionally choosing returns over growth," but that it could resume double-digit growth next year if prices rebound to $65/bbl.
- CEO Bill Thomas said EOG’s strategy of waiting for oil prices to recover will allow it to “not only weather the current low price environment but to take advantage of it."
- EOG can afford to wait, since it is one of the most financially sound E&P companies, with a return on capital that is significantly higher and debts that are significantly lower than the average for its sector.
- "Returns are what matter," so EOG plans to focus on the Eagle Ford, Bakken and Delaware Basin plays, which the CEO says deliver direct after-tax rate of return at greater than 35% at $55 oil.
- EOG says it will cut in half the number of rigs it runs this year to 27 and intentionally delay many completions, which makes sense given that well completion typically represents 60%-65% of the total cost of a well.
Thu, Feb. 19, 9:12 AM
Wed, Feb. 18, 6:46 PM
- EOG Resources (NYSE:EOG) -6.5% AH after Q4 earnings fell sharply from the prior-year quarter and badly missed Wall Street estimates.
- The drop in profits came despite a 26% Y/Y increase in crude and condensate production during Q4 to 307.7M bbl/day.
- EOG also says it will cut its capital budget by ~40% to $4.9B-$5.1B this year, and will delay a “significant” number of well completions as part of a strategy to increase its net present value while capitalizing on future commodity price increases.
- EOG says it plans to complete fewer wells in the Eagle Ford and the Bakken in 2015 than in 2014, but it expects 95 net well completions in the Permian Basin, a 53% increase over last year’s total.
Wed, Feb. 18, 5:13 PM
Tue, Feb. 17, 5:35 PM
- ABX, ACT, AMTG, ARII, ARRS, ASGN, AVG, AXLL, BGS, BJRI, CAR, CDE, CSLT, CVG, CW, CYNI, DENN, DTLK, ELNK, EOG, EQC, ETE, ETP, EXAM, FNF, HSTM, HT, IAG, IPI, KEG, KEYW, LHO, LOPE, MANT, MAR, MHLD, MIC, MRO, NVMI, OGS, OIS, PAAS, PCYC, PKD, REXX, RGP, SBRA, SCTY, SIX, SNPS, SSS, STR, SUN, SUNE, SXL, TERP, THRX, TILE, TRN, TS, UAM, WES, WGP, WMB, WPZ, XPO, YUME
Thu, Feb. 12, 11:33 AM
- Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf is proposing a new 5% severance tax on natural gas extraction in the state, saying the measure could generate $1B or more.
- The measure could face some pushback in the state's Republican-controlled legislature, but some kind of fracking tax could pass, as lawmakers from both parties already have proposed taxes from 3.2% to 8%.
- Like other major natural gas producing states, Pennsylvania already has a severance tax on the value of the gas extracted at the wellhead.
- Top Marcellus Shale producers include CHK, RRC, RDS.A, RDS.B, TLM, APC, ATLS, COG, CVX, CNX, EQT, EOG, XOM, WPX, XCO, CRZO, SWN, AR.
Tue, Feb. 10, 6:47 PM
- Figuring the debt markets are a bit more rational than the equity markets right now, Wunderlich analysts look to the bond market for some clues about energy investing.
- The firm finds that where Chesapeake Energy's (NYSE:CHK) debt is trading now as "quite refreshing" given the strong balance sheet the company has built, strengthening its conviction that CHK is a Best idea among oil stocks; others holding up well, it says, are financially strong names such as XEC, CXO, EGN, EOG, GPOR, MTZ, NBL, PTEN, PDCE, PXD and ROSE.
- In other cases, the debt is providing “equity-like returns” for investors who want to move out of stocks and into bonds, with the firm mentioning AREX, BBG, CWEI and NOG.
Wed, Feb. 4, 2:58 PM
- Halliburton (NYSE:HAL), Whiting Petroleum (NYSE:WLL), Hess (NYSE:HES) and other energy companies with a presence in North Dakota have decided, at least for now, not to lay off staff in the state, hoping to be prepared for any prolonged rebound in crude prices.
- By almost any metric - the jobless rate, payrolls, claims for unemployment benefits - there is little evidence to indicate the state at the center of the U.S. shale oil boom is about to suffer anything resembling a bust.
- Other large North Dakota producers, including Oasis Petroleum (NYSE:OAS), Statoil (NYSE:STO) and EOG Resources (NYSE:EOG), also have said they have no plans to reduce their workforce.
- Continental Resources (NYSE:CLR), the state's second largest oil producer, has not commented on staffing levels, but CEO Harold Hamm bragged in a press release yesterday that CLR's North Dakota acreage continues to "provide exceptional results."
Wed, Jan. 28, 3:59 PM
- Energy stocks are broadly lower as Nymex crude oil futures fell another $1.68/bbl (-3.6%) to $44.53 after today's inventory report showed the largest weekly supply buildup since 1982, but drilling contractor are whacked with especially large losses.
- Examples: NBR -11.7%, PTEN -8.6%, PES -10.9%, PDS -12.3%, KEG -6.5%; Helmerich & Payne (NYSE:HP), which reportedly has launched a round of steep layoffs, -6.3%.
- Among independent producers: DNR -9.7%, NFX -4.6%, SM -8.6%, SGY -10%, SD -9.7%, EOG -5.3%, PXD -6.8%, QEP -6%, APC -4.2%, XEC -3%.
- ETFs: XLE, ERX, VDE, OIH, XOP, ERY, FCG, DIG, GASL, DUG, IYE, XES, IEO, IEZ, PXE, PXI, FENY, PXJ, RYE, FXN, DDG
Tue, Jan. 27, 12:58 PM
- Marathon Oil (MRO -1.3%), Cobalt International Energy (CIE -0.3%) and RSP Permian (RSPP +0.8%) are downgraded to Neutral from Buy at UBS, as the firm cuts its 2015 Brent/WTI crude forecasts to a respective $52.50/bbl and $49/bbl, and lowers 2016 Brent/WTI crude estimates to $67.50 and $62.50.
- UBS also is cautious on several energy names with large free cash flow deficits, slowing growth profiles and rich relative valuations: COP, DVN, MUR, UPL, RRC, DNR, MHR.
- The firm's top Buys are APC, CHK and EOG.
Wed, Jan. 21, 3:59 PM
- Credit Suisse thinks it is still too early to buy E&P equities but the picture should brighten by late in Q1, when the firm suggests the time could be right to make a play for the strong balance sheets offered by the likes of Anadarko Petroleum (NYSE:APC), Devon Energy (NYSE:DVN), EOG Resources (NYSE:EOG), Marathon Oil (NYSE:MRO) and Pioneer Natural Resources (NYSE:PXD).
- E&P stocks historically have been highly anticipatory, the firm says, with the stocks moving ahead of crude oil, adding that the key leading indicator of U.S. drilling and completion activity is U.S. drilling permits.
Thu, Jan. 15, 10:25 AM
- North Dakota oil production rose to a new record even as energy companies drilled fewer wells and the rig count dropped to a near five-year low.
- The state's oil output hit a record 1.19M bbl/day in November, the most recent month available, according to data released yesterday by North Dakota’s Department of Mineral Resources.
- Despite the new record, the head of the department warned the state’s crude production will peak and decline later this year if oil prices don’t rebound; the current price of North Dakota sweet crude is ~$29.25/bbl, the lowest since Dec. 2008.
- The latest drilling rig count is 158, the lowest in nearly five years and down from a high of 218 rigs in 2012, but the department says production may not start to drop until the rig count falls to 130 or lower.
- Gregor McDonald argues that the North Dakota data confirming that Bakken drilling activity has slowed meaningfully has sparked the snapback rally in crude oil prices.
- Top Bakken producers: CLR, EOG, WLL, HES, XOM, OAS, NOG, EOX, MRO
- ETFs: USO, OIL, UCO, SCO, BNO, DTO, DBO, UWTI, USL, DWTI, DNO, SZO, OLO, TWTI, OLEM
Wed, Jan. 14, 2:35 PM
- Barclays downgrades the large-cap E&P sector to Negative from Neutral and the small- and mid-cap E&P group to Negative from Positive, arguing that downside risk outweigh potential gains even if oil prices recover.
- Equity investors are pricing in WTI crude assumptions of close to $75/bbl in 2016 compared to current strip prices of ~$57, Barclays says, also noting that an abundance of relatively cheap oil supply from U.S. producers could further delay a price recovery.
- Among specific names, the firm downgrades CHK, SD, REN and HK to Underweight; DVN, CLR, KOS, MRO, RSPP and WLL are cut to equal weight.
- At the same time, Barclays picked a few favorites, upgrading Range Resources (NYSE:RRC) to Overweight from Equal Weight, and maintained Overweight ratings on large-cap E&P companies CNQ, EOG and NBL; among small- and mid-cap E&P names, the firm favors AR, CXO and XEC.
- ETFs: XOP, IEO, PXE
Tue, Jan. 13, 3:23 PM
- J.P. Morgan's Joseph Allman is “mildly bullish” on oil and gas E&P companies in 2015, as short-term nervousness about the oil market’s oversupply is outweighed by the benefits of low oil prices, declining service costs and a more balanced oil market.
- Allman’s favorite picks among big-cap names are EOG, APC and NBL, among mid-caps are XEC and PXD, plus PDCE in the small-cap space; his least favorite stocks are APA, AREX, GDP and JONE.
- Among majors, JPM analysts Phil Gresh and John Royall initiate SunCor (NYSE:SU) at Overweight, citing "top tier sustainable dividend coverage and leverage, with some underlying growth potential"; the pair also downgrade Cenovus (NYSE:CVE) to Neutral, tags ConocoPhillips with an Underweight rating, and are neutral on Exxon (NYSE:XOM) and Chevron (NYSE:CVX).
- Earlier: Valero Energy upgraded, Marathon Petroleum downgraded at J.P. Morgan
- ETFs: XLE, ERX, VDE, OIH, XOP, ERY, DIG, DUG, IYE, IEO, PXE, FENY, PXJ, RYE, FXN, DDG
Mon, Jan. 12, 7:22 PM
- The number of drilling rigs operating in North Dakota's oil fields has dropped to 159, the lowest level since November 2010.
- The state lost eight rigs overnight, according to state data, a steep one-day drop not seen for years in the second-ranked U.S. oil producer.
- The drop comes after Continental Resources (NYSE:CLR), Oasis Petroleum (NYSE:OAS) and other companies announced capital spending cuts for 2015, admitting they planned to use fewer rigs this year.
- Other major North Dakota producers include EOG, WLL, HES, XOM, NOG, EOX and MRO.
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