Wed, May 13, 10:33 AM
- Petronas' C$1.15B ($960M) offer to compensate the Lax Kw’alaams aboriginal group for building a natural gas export terminal on its ancestral lands in British Columbia has been rejected, dealing another blow to plans to export liquefied natural gas from North America to Asian markets.
- The public should recognize that "this is not a money issue: this is environmental and cultural," the group says.
- Winning the support of indigenous groups including the 3,600-member Lax Kw’alaams is considered critical for advancing the Pacific NorthWest LNG project and other gas export plans in Canada.
- The project is one of several LNG developments proposed for the province, including from Shell (RDS.A, RDS.B), Chevron (NYSE:CVX) and Exxon (NYSE:XOM).
Tue, May 12, 8:39 AM
- Exxon Mobil (NYSE:XOM) says it has begun ramping up production at the new Banyu Urip oil field, part of its Cepu block in East Java, Indonesia, targeting peak output later this year of more than 200K bbl/day.
- The Banyu Urip discovery in 2001 was one of the largest in Asia in the last 15 years, but disagreements between XOM and Indonesia's state oil company Pertamina have slowed its development.
- The field is crucial to Indonesia's long-term efforts to meet rising domestic demand as production declines at aging fields in the former OPEC member.
Mon, May 11, 4:59 PM
- Oil production from seven major U.S. shale plays is expected to fall by 86K bbl/day in June, according to the latest report from the Energy Information Administration.
- Oil output at the Eagle Ford shale play in South Texas is forecast to see the biggest decline, down 47K bbl/day, while production at the Bakken shale play, centered in North Dakota, is expected to drop by 31K bbl/day, the report says.
- "The data shows that production in the Bakken and Eagle Ford [plays] peaked in March at 1.33M bbl/day and 1.73M bbl/day, respectively," says WTRG Economics energy economist James Williams.
- Among the top Eagle Ford producers: EOG, BHP, COP, CHK, MRO, APC
- Among the top Bakken producers: CLR, EOG, WLL, HES, XOM, OAS, NOG, EOX, MRO
Mon, May 11, 2:56 PM
- Exxon Mobil (XOM -1.6%) and Imperial Oil (IMO -0.8%) say they have started bitumen production at the $2B Cold Lake Nabiye project expansion in Alberta.
- XOM says the expansion adds ~20K bbl/day to what is already the largest oil sands operation in Canada, which could double to 40K barrels soon, bringing the total capacity to nearly 200K bbl/day.
- Cold Lake is the largest and longest-running in-situ oil sands operation in Canada, and includes five steam generation and bitumen production plants; the operation produced an average 150K bbl/day of bitumen in recent years.
Thu, May 7, 4:59 PM
- Exxon Mobil (NYSE:XOM) says the latest effort to find oil and natural gas in disputed waters off Guyana is showing promise after a bore hole in the Atlantic Ocean in an area claimed by Venezuela produces positive results.
- Decades of exploration in Guyana have yet to locate a viable source of oil or gas despite the proximity of energy-rich Venezuela and Trinidad and Tobago.
- Venezuela has long claimed about two-thirds of Guyana's territory as well as the offshore area where XOM began drilling in March.
Wed, May 6, 7:38 AM
- In a stunning election result, voters in Canada's energy-rich Alberta province swept aside the four-decade hold on power by the ruling Progressive Conservative Party and elected an New Democratic Party majority government that wants to raise corporate taxes and increase oil and gas royalties.
- NDP leader Rachel Notley - who has vowed to raise the corporate tax rate to 12% at a time energy companies are reeling from layoffs and project cancellations amid weaker oil prices - is expected to succeed Jim Prentice as Alberta’s premier.
- Notley has said she would not lobby for the proposed Keystone XL pipeline to link Alberta’s oil deposits to refineries in Texas, and that she is against the Northern Gateway pipeline from Alberta to the British Columbia coast.
- She also has promised another review of oil royalties at a time other oil producing areas around the world that are also struggling with low oil prices are expected to make their terms more appealing.
- Relevant tickers: ENB, SU, TRP, IMO, CNQ, CVE, OTCQB:HUSKF, OTCQX:COSWF, XOM, BP, RDS.A, RDS.B
Tue, May 5, 8:55 PM
- David Einhorn's critical presentation pushed Pioneer Natural Resources (NYSE:PXD) 5% lower over the past two days, but Wolfe Research's Paul Sankey is out in defense of PXD and fracking companies generally, in large part because of their “takeover attractiveness."
- "Pioneer is the single most attractive takeover target to Exxon Mobil (NYSE:XOM), and the entire group Einhorn listed as short candidates based on a value-destructive business model has takeover merits," Sankey writes, adding the potential for a takeout is at least part of why the market is overvaluing PXD.
- Einhorn said investors in PXD and fracking companies overall - he also mentioned CXO, EOG, WLL and CLR - have been willing to largely ignore their high capital expenditures, but Sankey believes the U.S. energy revolution "is in its very early stages, and efficiency and operational performance continues to grow at high pace,” making long-term projections for both expenditures and production challenging.
- Previous: Pioneer Natural sinks 2.5% as Einhorn slams PXD, other frackers
Fri, May 1, 6:03 PM
- The Petronas-led group planning a liquefied natural gas export terminal on Canada’s Pacific coast is offering C$1.15B ($950M) over 40 years to one First Nations community to approve the project.
- Pacific NorthWest LNG is offering the payments to the Lax Kw’alaams First Nation so it can build the unit on traditional lands at the port of Prince Rupert in British Columbia.
- The facility is part of a C$36B plan by Petronas to ship gas reserves from Canada’s westernmost province by tanker to growing energy markets in Asia.
- The project is one of 19 LNG developments proposed for B.C., including from heavyweight players Shell (RDS.A, RDS.B), Chevron (NYSE:CVX) and Exxon (NYSE:XOM).
Fri, May 1, 3:57 PM
- Chevron's (CVX -1.9%) top priority is maintaining a dividend that’s “competitive and growing,” CFO Patricia Yarrington said in today's earnings conference call, but WSJ's Maxwell Murphy writes that the company needs a surge in cash flow to maintain its dividend and capital spending.
- In its Q1 earnings report, CVX said its operating cash flow was $2.3B - less than a quarter of its combined capex and dividend; the company's $33.9B debt now tops that of rival Exxon (NYSE:XOM) even though CVX has roughly half the annual revenue.
- Yarrington said CVX will take a multi-pronged approach to generating enough cash, boosting cash flow through production growth while trimming its cost structure and capex budget, and selling assets; she said CVX had disposed of $10B in assets over the past 16 months, putting it well on track to achieve its $15B four-year plan.
Fri, May 1, 3:15 PM
- Exxon Mobil (XOM +1.4%) is maintained with an Outperform rating at Wells Fargo following strong Q1 results, citing XOM's modest growth, strong balance sheet, industry leading access to capital - important if attractive acquisition opportunities arise - and a decades-long commitment to shareholder returns.
- The firm raises its FY 2015 EPS estimate to $4.48 from $3.62 based on the Q1 EPS beat, higher non-U.S. gas price realizations, and slightly lower upstream operating expenditure, and believes shares should reach the $93-$97 range based on 18x its 2016 EPS forecast of $5.25.
- Morgan Stanley analysts are underwhelmed, however, rating the stock at Underweight, believing XOM "will participate yet unlikely lead in a commodity recovery we expect will unfold over the next 12 months and see upside potential and yield support."
- Coming down somewhere in between, J.P. Morgan sees XOM as mostly a defensive, dividend-oriented play and rates the stock as Neutral.
Fri, May 1, 8:17 AM
- Gasoline prices at the pump are up across the U.S. after a rebound in crude oil prices, but nowhere is the jump as severe as in California, where prices have surged by a third in the past week and by ~$1/gal in the past month.
- The swift rise is because of problems at some refineries in the state: Last week, Chevron's (NYSE:CVX) Richmond refinery reported it was flaring, and Tesoro (NYSE:TSO) indicated it was experiencing minor issues at its Martinez refinery - The incidents trimmed output, worried traders and sent wholesale prices shooting up.
- California has been dealing with tight supply after a February explosion at Exxon's (NYSE:XOM) Torrance refinery, and it might take until July before operations there return to normal.
- TSO also is undergoing unplanned maintenance work to solve a problem at its Los Angeles facility, and CVX has shut some units in El Segundo for planned maintenance work.
- Refinery events are seen and treated as trade secrets, so any action by oil companies can cause a pop in the market, oil analyst Tom Kloza says: "There's a few big companies that if all of a sudden they're seen buying aggressively in the market, it's going to prompt speculations like, ‘Oh, they're having problems.'"
Thu, Apr. 30, 3:25 PM
- BP (BP -0.8%) says production has started at the Kizomba Satellites phase 2 development in Block 15 offshore Angola, in the first of its planned start-ups for 2015 to be followed up later in the year with the Greater Plutonio phase 3 project in neighboring Block 18.
- The project develops 190M barrels of oil with peak production estimated at 70K bbl/day, and is expected to increase total Block 15 production to 350K bbl/day.
- The project is operated by Exxon Mobil (NYSE:XOM) with a 40% interest, BP has a 26.67% stake, Eni (NYSE:E) has 20% and Statoil (NYSE:STO) has 13.33%.
Thu, Apr. 30, 9:19 AM
- Exxon Mobil (NYSE:XOM) +1.3% premarket after reporting a smaller than expected drop in Q1 earnings, as production and refining results rose even as lower crude prices ate into earnings.
- Q1 earnings from XOM's downstream refining and marketing business more than doubled to $1.7B, up $854M in the year-ago period, benefiting from cheaper crude and by its international operations.
- However, Q1 earnings in the upstream E&P business fell 63% Y/Y to $2.86B even as production increased 2.3% to 4.2M boe/day, benefiting from new developments in Papua New Guinea, Canada, Angola, Indonesia, and U.S. onshore liquids plays; earnings in the chemical segment slipped 6.2% to $982M.
- Q1 total costs fell to $61B from $91B in the year-ago quarter; capital spending totaled $7.7B, down 9% Y/Y.
- XOM also says it expects to buy back $1B in shares in Q2, in line with the reduced level it targeted for Q1.
- "It was a strong quarter," said Edward Jones analyst Brian Youngberg, adding that XOM's diversified model tends to hold up better in a weaker oil market.
Thu, Apr. 30, 8:05 AM
Wed, Apr. 29, 2:34 PM
Tue, Apr. 28, 3:59 PM
- The Dutch parliament votes to reverse the burden of proof in disputes over damages to buildings caused by gas production at the Groningen field.
- Under the motion approved by the Dutch parliament, the company that operates the Groningen field - a joint venture including Shell (RDS.A, RDS.B), Exxon (NYSE:XOM) and the government - would have to provide evidence that disputed damage claims are bogus, rather than claimants having to show evidence they are legitimate.
- The decision could be an expensive one: An recent estimate commissioned by the province of Groningen estimated as many as 212K buildings may have been damaged by earthquakes caused by gas production, with costs of compensation and strengthening buildings running as high as €30B over the next 30 years.
XOM vs. ETF Alternatives
Exxon Mobil Corporation is engaged in energy, involving exploration for, and production of, crude oil and natural gas, manufacture of petroleum products and transportation and sale of crude oil, natural gas and petroleum products.
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