Today, 12:22 PM
- Russia's Eurasia Drilling says it will extend the deadline on its proposed deal to sell a stake to Schlumberger (SLB +0.6%) to April 30 from March 31, as Russian officials are yet to grant the approvals needed for the deal to be completed.
- SLB said last month that planned to buy a 45.65% stake in Eurasia for $1.7B, potentially paving the way for it to become the sole owner of Russia's most active oilfield services company.
Thu, Mar. 26, 12:22 PM
- Schlumberger (SLB +0.2%) must satisfy a list of conditions, in part linked to sanctions, to gain approval for its $1.7B bid to buy Russia's Eurasia Drilling, says the head of Russia’s commission on foreign investment, which will meet with SLB executives in the next 10 days.
- One condition could require SLB to sell Eurasia if sanctions impede the company’s work, according to the Russian official.
- Lukoil, Eurasia’s largest customer, is backing the deal, saying it would be good for Russia; Lukoil CEO Vagit Alekperov owns ~3% of the driller’s shares.
Wed, Mar. 25, 3:56 PM
- Schlumberger (SLB +1.8%) has agreed to pay $232M for violating U.S. sanctions in Iran and Sudan, WSJ reports, in part of the government’s crackdown on companies doing business with countries the U.S. has declared off limits.
- The U.S. Justice Department reportedly will announce the plea deal later this afternoon, consisting of a $155M criminal fine - the biggest criminal fine ever imposed for a U.S. sanctions violation - and forfeiture of $77M in illegally obtained profits.
- The agreement would cap a six-year investigation by the Justice and Commerce departments.
Mon, Mar. 23, 9:57 AM
- Schlumberger (SLB +0.7%) expects oil and gas industry spending on exploration and production outside of North America to drop by 10%-15% in 2015, even with a partial recovery in Brent crude prices during H2, it says as it releases presentation slides for Howard Weil's annual energy conference.
- SLB expects the GCC part of the Middle East to still post growth in investment levels in 2015, while anticipating double-digit spend reductions in Latin America driven by Mexico and Brazil, in Europe and Africa driven by the North Sea, and sub-Sahara Africa and in Asia, driven by China, Malaysia and Australia.
- "Going forward, we believe financial prudence, where investments are limited to the cash flow generated by production, will be the new normal for U.S. tight oil developments," CEO Paal Kibsgaard says.
Fri, Mar. 13, 2:58 PM
- Oppenheimer cuts its EPS estimates and stock price targets on Schlumberger (SLB -1%), Halliburton (HAL -2.4%) and Baker Hughes (BHI -1.8%), as the companies are in the midst of one of the sharpest activity reductions in this sector in the past 30 years, but its maintains Outperform ratings that still come with big upside if the respective price targets are met.
- The firm believes the rapid pace of activity decline benefits investors because it could bring world oil markets into balance more quickly, and sees a better than average chance for upside surprise in 2016 due to recovering oil prices and healthy incremental margins from 2015 cost-reduction measures.
- Oppenheimer cut SLB's 2015 EPS estimate to $3.35 from $4.25, its 2016 estimate to $4.40 from $5.50, and its price target to $101 from $110; HAL's 2015 EPS is lowered to $1.70 from $2.70, its 2016 EPS to $2.85 from $4.00, and its price target to $60 from $64; BHI's 2015 EPS is reduced to $1.75 from $2.50, its 2016 EPS to $2.60 from $3.40, and its price target to $58 from $60.
Fri, Mar. 6, 11:45 AM
- Schlumberger (SLB -1.8%) continues as the top large-cap oilfield services stock at Credit Suisse, which cites SLB's lower exposure to the short-cycle onshore North America business than peers and more business related to longer-cycle international activity.
- The firm expects SLB to outperform as long as oil prices are flat to down and the U.S. rig count is declining: "Concerns about continued weakness in exploration and the continued stacking of offshore rigs will focus the relative differences in large-cap OFS performance. For now, SLB wins."
Thu, Feb. 26, 6:38 PM
- Credit Suisse says the recent rally in oil prices and in oilfield services stocks (NYSEARCA:OIH) is a classic dead cat bounce, and that as soon as U.S. storage gets full - and it is close - crude prices will fall, bringing expectations and stocks down with it.
- The firm says its sector outlook is increasingly negative as companies report increased pricing pressure, a record drop in the activity barometer of the rig count, and offshore rigs and projects confronting headwinds that could take a couple of years to fix.
- Relevant stocks: SLB, HAL, BHI, CAM, HLX, SPN, NOV, FET, DRQ, FTI, OIS
Fri, Feb. 20, 8:15 AM
- Eurasia Drilling says it is delaying a deal to sell a stake in the company to Schlumberger (NYSE:SLB), pending approval from Russia's Federal Anti-Monopoly Service, and will not occur during Q1 as previously expected.
- SLB said last month it planned to buy a 45.65% stake in Eurasia for ~$1.7B, potentially paving the way for it to become the sole owner of the Russian oilfield services company.
Thu, Feb. 19, 6:30 PM
- Saudi Aramco, whose prolific production has contributed to the drop in oil prices, is starting to feel the pain from its country’s decision to keep pumping and is now asking contractors for steep discounts in an effort to cut costs, according to a WSJ report.
- The Saudi oil company reportedly summoned oil services companies including Schlumberger (NYSE:SLB), Halliburton (NYSE:HAL) and Baker Hughes (NYSE:BHI) to ask for discounts of up to 20% on certain services such as well testing procedures; the companies do a combined $6B/year in business with Aramco.
- The Saudi company also is said to have delayed plans to build a $2B clean fuels plant and held up deepwater oil and gas exploration and drilling activities in the Red Sea because their profitability is now in question.
- Aramco is considering slashing E&P spending to $30B/year from $40B while oil prices remain low, industry sources say.
Wed, Feb. 18, 3:15 PM
- RBC analysts think it's time to position for an oil recovery by buying oilfield services stocks such as Schlumberger (SLB -1.2%), Patterson-UTI (PTEN -0.4%), Nabors Industries (NBR +2.5%) and Precision Drilling (PDS +0.4%).
- The firm believes oil prices will bottom in H1 2015, improves during H2 and averages at least $75/bbl in 2016, and sees U.S. land drillers and intensive service companies providing the best returns in the early phases of cycle recovery.
- RBC notes that three of the top five performing stocks in the sector off the lows since 1997 have been PTEN, PDS and NBR; the firm considers SLB and NBR as best ideas, while PTEN is a small-cap best idea.
Tue, Feb. 17, 10:19 AM
- U.S. and European suppliers to the oil industry are still able to seek work in Russia’s Arctic despite sanctions designed to limit their involvement because the rules do not apply to international subsidiaries, according to a Bloomberg report.
- Schlumberger’s (SLB -0.6%) Russian unit bid in a December tender to supply drilling fluids to an offshore Arctic project operated by Gazprom Neft, and in the prior month, Baker Hughes’ (BHI -0.4%) local unit and a Panamanian unit of Schlumberger offered drilling services at the same field.
- Neither company has been accused of breaking any laws, and none of the bids was successful, but the use of subsidiaries to legally skirt sanctions will raise questions about the effectiveness of measures imposed to punish Russia.
Tue, Jan. 20, 11:49 AM
- The timing for Schlumberger’s (SLB -0.7%) acquisition of 45.6% in Russia’s largest drilling company is considered unusual, given the sanctions imposed on Russia, but Eurasia's shares have fallen by more than 60% over the past year after top customers Lukoil and Gazprom came under sanctions.
- The move signals that SLB is “taking an opportunity to strengthen its presence in the regional market,” the Otrkitie brokerage says, adding that it views the $22/share valuation of the deal as fair.
- SLB stock price targets are cut at several firms, including Argus and Jefferies, to reflect expectations for reduced spending by E&P customers, although the company generally is seen as well positioned in 2015 despite current industry headwinds.
Tue, Jan. 20, 4:39 AM
- Schlumberger (NYSE:SLB) is acquiring a 45.65% stake in Russia's largest drilling company, Eurasia Drilling, for $1.7B, and will have the option to buy the rest of the company three years after the deal closes.
- Eurasia will delist its depositary receipts from the London Stock Exchange as part of the agreement.
Fri, Jan. 16, 3:27 PM
- Schlumberger (SLB +5.8%) pushes to highs of the day following Q4 results that were strong operationally once the big writedowns are stripped away, with continued strength driven by record activity in North America, Middle East and Asia.
- In today's earnings conference call, CEO Paal Kibsgaard says crude oil’s collapse is putting heat on SLB’s prices for drilling services and fracking in North America, but the upside is that shale producers now want better technologies to squeeze more oil out of the wells they have already drilled.
- Next-generation fracturing fluids SLB introduced early last year have so far grown in sales at 4x the rate of its 2011 iteration - which was a fast grower on its own - as falling oil prices force oil companies to adopt new technologies faster and more broadly.
- On the pending merger with Baker Hughes (NYSE:BHI), the CEO says the deal could mean a glass ceiling on SLB’s market share in some countries will fall away.
Thu, Jan. 15, 5:19 PM
- Schlumberger (NYSE:SLB) +0.6% AH after reporting Q4 earnings fell 82% Y/Y as it wrote down $1.7B in assets, but adjusted earnings beat Wall Street estimates.
- SLB says it plans to cut 9,000 employees, or ~7.5% of its workforce around the globe, and recorded a related $296M charge.
- Q4 results were driven by growth in North America, where revenue rose 16% to a record $16.15B; international revenue rose 4% to $32.1B, as strength in the Middle East and Asia was partially offset by a significant decline in revenue from Russia.
- Expects 2015 capex of ~$3B, down from $4B last year.
- SLB reported earlier that it raised its dividend 25% to $0.50/share.
Thu, Jan. 15, 4:17 PM
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Schlumberger NV is a supplier of technology, integrated project management and information solutions to customers working in the oil and gas industry. Its business segments areReservoir Characterization Group, Drilling Group and Production Group.
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