Monday Morning – Getting Busier Towards Earnings
Posted by zmann on October 16, 2006
–OPEC trims 2006 worldwide demand forecast by 100, 000 bopd, leaves 2007 forecast unchanged at 1.5% growth.
–Emergency meeting in Doha, Qatar on Thursday. What a moment. Nope, cancelled.
–Venezuela says any cuts will begin December 1, not November 1 as previously announced which fits nicely with Saudi’s previous statement of keeping their deliveries to Asia unchanged through November.
–PetroChina say it increase oil and gas production by 5.8% through the first nine months of 2006 (793.9 mm BOE)–expectations were for a 5% increase. Crude production was up only 1% to 626 mm barrels (2.38 mm bopd), while natural gas was up 28% (maybe they should sell it to India- see vested interest story below).
–Russia is considering pulling 20 oil licenses from Russian oil company Lukoil. This represents the bulk of the assets purchased from MRO last spring. Putin says they moved to slow to explore and develop the leases but I think he’s just trying to appear more even handed after his recent moves against foreign oil companies.
Early Read On Oil… Late last night, oil surged through $59 on yet another schedule emergency Opec meeting. Trading looked light and it fell swiftly back thrugh $59 to trade at $56.51, down $0.06 at 8:30 est.
…And Natural Gas. Forecast for Buffalo (got 2 feet of snow last week): Monday 59, Wed 66, Detroit (snow moved up baseball), Mon 56, Wed 64, Chicago (a general barometer for mid west weather) Mon 58, Wed 65. Crisis averted, please keep selling.
–My prediction for this week’s gas injections: 45-50 Bcf. The forecast for heating degree days was 60 so I’ll probably revise when the real number comes out today.
Talk About A Story With A Vested Interst. T Boone Pickens and the heads of DVN and EOG say natural gas prices are going much higher this winter: http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601103&sid=aJNu32QG4gYI&refer=news
–Pickens picked off a portion of Amaranth’s book and the other two are a couple of the largest non-major North American gas producers. No, they’re not unbiased. TBoone is a very smart, “in the know” kind of guy but he’s not perfect and like Cramer, he uses words to talk up his investments.
–An FBR E&P analyst cites a projected 1% decline in supply when all numbers are tallied for 2006. Wow, run for cover (that decline is also based on government data so see my last post). That means gas should trade at 5x its average level in the 1990s? I don’t think so.
–The story also cites high levels of long contracts amongst speculators, see my CFTC page but this is usually not a good sign for gas prices. When these guys decide the play is over or change their miinds, they will stampede the gate, flushing gas prices.
–International generation projects are short of gas supplies with 4.4 billion of new generation capacity in India idle now. Comment: gas is local so it’s a pretty big stretch to say that lack of gas in India affects our gas prices.
–I can remember when US gas supplies were said to be declining at 3-5%. Gas was $3. Papa, EOG’s CEO is looking for an average of $9 for the 12 months beginning November. We’ll see…
–HES caught an upgrade.
–Morgan Keegan cut several drillers and service companys from buy to hold, including PTEN and BRNC (2nd downer in 3 days). Thanks guys.
–B of A cut substantially its price targets for a bunch onshore and offshore drillers.
CHK buys into Alabama Shale. CHK made a small, $75 million, 20,000 acre foray into various Alabama shales plays for a 50% interest with a local drilling company. This company is a dangerous short if Majors or Super Independents start shopping for N. American natural gas.