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A recent study shows the U.S. fracking boom added 725,000 jobs nationwide between 2005 and 2012. U.S. fracking boom added 725,000 jobs -study By: Richard Valdmanis (Reuters) A U.S. oil and gas drilling boom fueled by hydraulic fracturing technology added about 725,000 jobs nationwide between 2005 and 2012, blunting the impact of the financial crisis, according to a study released on Friday. The findings could play into a debate over so-called fracking, in which water, sand and chemicals are injected into underground shale formations to produce oil and gas reserves that were otherwise inaccessible. Supporters and opponents of fracking have been debating over the degree to which fracking is benefiting the economy versus affecting the health and environment of our communities, Dartmouth College said in a press release outlining the research, which was led by some of its professors. Drilling activity has declined over the past several months due to sliding oil and gas prices. Researchers
US manufacturing has been on an upswing but consumer spending still lags. US manufacturing picks up pace in May By: BBC News An index compiled for the Institute for Supply Management, which represents purchasing managers, rose to 52.8 in May, up from 51.5 in April, providing hope that growth is rebounding from a first-quarter slump. Anything above 50 indicates expansion. Less encouraging were figures showing consumer spending, a large driver of the US economy, was unchanged in April. That compares to a 0.5% increase in March. Stagnant consumer spending is one reason that the US manufacturing sector has stalled, and only grown slightly in the past few months. Manufacturers usually lags consumer spending, as firms wait to boost production in the wake of spending by consumers. To read the rest of this article, visit BBC News.
U.S. job openings reached a 14-year high in February which has given a boost to oil futures. Oil Rallies On US Jobs Data, Bullish EIA Monthly Report By: Robert Gibbons (Reuters) NEW YORK, April 7 (Reuters) - Oil futures rallied on Tuesday, erasing losses on strong jobs data, U.S. government forecasts for lower domestic crude production growth and higher global demand for oil. U.S. job openings surged to a 14-year high in February the Labor Departments monthly Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS) said. That JOLTS report was certainly quite strong and strong employment equals strong gasoline demand, said John Kilduff, partner at Again Capital LLC in New York. Also supportive was an Energy Information Administration (EIA) monthly report raising forecasts for U.S. and global demand growth and lowering forecasts for crude oil production growth in the United States. U.S. May crude rose $1.84 to settle at $53.98 a barrel after dropping to $51.17. The $54.13 peak was the highest
The U.S. dollar has gained ground against all major world currencies over the past nine months. Tom Petruno of the LA Times reports on the global implications. Soaring dollar puts the world on sale for Americans By: Tom Petruno (LA Times) Americans have long complained that the dollar doesnt buy much anymore. Suddenly, the dollars problem may be that it buys too much a change that has huge implications across the global economy for consumers, businesses, investors and governments. The U.S. currencys value has surged over the last nine months, reaching levels against some world currencies last seen more than a decade ago. In Europe, it now costs just $1.09 to buy one euro, down from $1.37 a year ago and almost $1.50 four years ago. To put it another way, an American tourist strolling the streets of Paris this April can buy 25% more croissants, cafe au laits or mini Eiffel towers than a year ago with the same dollars. The greenbacks advance has been even more dramatic against some
Wood Mackenzie analysts are reporting thatunconventional oil production will keep rising through 2016,despite lower oil prices. Wood Mac: Demise of Unconventional Oil Exaggerated By: Karen Boman (Rigzone) Low oil prices have hurt the economics of U.S. Lower 48 projects, but reports of the demise of unconventional oil have been greatly exaggerated, according to a recent analysis by Wood Mackenzie. A breakeven analysis of over 800 individual assets in the Lower 48 show dramatic variations in the viability of company asset bases and subplays. While the majority of production is not at risk in the long term, cash flow and funding limitations could impact activity, according to a March 24 press statement. U.S. Lower 48 oil and condensate production will keep rising through 2016 reaching 7.5 million barrels per day (bpd) but the pace of growth will slow considerably starting the second half of this year, Cody Rice, senior research analyst for Lower 48 upstream research at Wood Mackenzie,
U.S. consumers and end users were the big winners of the shale gas boom as lower gas prices generated an extra $200/year per U.S. wallet. Consumers got bulk of economic gains from shale boom, economists find By: Bill Holland (SNL) Consumers and end users reaped the bulk of the economic benefits created by the U.S. shale gas boom between 2007 and 2013, while the producers share was limited by falling prices, according to an economic study presented March 19 at the Brookings Institution in Washington, D.C. The researchers also found that nearly all the decreases in wholesale gas prices were passed through to end users and consumers, rather than being trimmed away by marketers and distributors along the supply chain. In general, the big winners were U.S. consumers and end users. They took home roughly $200 per year per person as the direct and indirect effects of lower gas prices percolated through the economy, according to the study, Welfare and Distributional Implications of Shale
U.S. rig counts have fallen 45 percent since late 2014 and producers have cut spending by 25-60 percent. Schlumberger CEO Paal Kibsgaard said these are signs that the liberal spending days are over for domestic shale producers. Schlumberger sees prudence as new normal for U.S. shale oil By: Swetha Gopinath and Anannya Pramanick (Reuters) - The U.S. shale oil industry may have forever abandoned its heavy-spending ways in the face of sliding crude prices, Schlumberger Ltd (SLB.N), the worlds No.1 oilfield services provider, said on Monday. Spending cuts already announced by producers - to the tune of 25 to 60 percent - have dropped the rig count by 45 percent since late 2014, and output wToill soon decline or flatten out so prices can recover, Schlumberger Chief Executive Paal Kibsgaard said. U.S. oil prices CLc1 have fallen by 50 percent since June to below $50 per barrel as growing supplies of tight oil from shale and oil sands in North America overwhelm weak global demand. The
The Federal Reserve Open Market Committee meets today and tomorrow and investors are watching closely to see if interest rates will be raised this year or not. Week Ahead: All Eyes on the FOMC Statement By: Dunstan Prial The Federal Reserve policy-setting boards two-day meeting next week is one of the most important in recent memory and will be closely watched by investors. When its over, markets should know with much more certainty when the Fed plans to raise interest rates. The Federal Open Market Committee meets Tuesday and Wednesday and will release a statement on any new policy initiatives Wednesday at 2 p.m. ET. Fed Chair Janet Yellen will hold a press conference at 2:30 P.M. ET following the release of that statement. All eyes will focus on whether the word patient stays in or is removed from the statement. If its removed, markets can be reasonably assured that the central bank plans to raise interest rates later this year, probably as soon as the summer. The Fed added the
The producer price index fell for the fourth straight month in February, a trend that could affect an anticipated interest hike from the Fed. Wholesale Inflation Unexpectedly Fall in February By: Lucia Mutikani (Reuters) U.S. producer prices unexpectedly fell in February on weak trade margins, pointing to muted inflation pressures that could argue against an anticipated June interest rate hike from the Federal Reserve. The Labor Department said on Friday its producer price index for final demand fell 0.5 percent after dropping 0.8 percent in January. It was the fourth straight monthly decline in the PPI. In the 12 months through February, producer prices fell 0.6 percent, the first drop since the series was revamped in 2009, after being unchanged in January. Economists polled by Reuters had forecast the PPI rising 0.3 percent last month and remaining unchanged from a year ago. The decline in producer inflation came despite a stabilization in energy prices, which had weighed on
Collin Eaton of Fuel Fix reports on howNorth American oil producers just saw the biggest quarterly surge from Wall Street in at least seven years. Producers collect $7.8 billion as Wall Street rushes back to oil By: Collin Eaton (FuelFix) HOUSTON Public money is starting to flow back to North American oil producers at a time when cash is a scarce commodity in the oil patch. Wall Street investors in the past two months have pumped $7.75 billion into 16 separate stock-market equity fund-raises for oil companies like Noble Energy, Newfield Exploration, Encana Corp. and Oasis Petroleum, according to Tudor, Pickering, Holt Co. and Credit Suisse. Thats the biggest quarterly surge in at least seven years, and its more equity than oil producers issued in all of 2009. The surge comes as private equity firms are scouting the field for potential acquisitions, armed with multibillion-dollar funds. With U.S. oil refusing to budge from around $50 a barrel in recent weeks, investors are beginning
In this video from Financial Times, Tanya Powley talks with Weir Group chief executive Keith Cochrane about falling commodity prices, job cuts, and the global economy. Weir Group on oil and the economy By: Financial Times See the video here.
Oil prices are up more than 30% since January and global demand is increasing. Alex Lawler of Reuters reports on how OPEC tactics during the downturn look to be paying off. Higher oil forecasts suggest OPEC tactics are paying off By: Alex Lawler (Reuters) LONDON, Feb 13 (Reuters) - The worlds three big energy agencies are forecasting higher demand for OPECs crude oil this year, a sign the producing nations strategy to let prices fall is starting to win them back market share from rivals who are cutting output. After an oversupply of world oil sent prices tumbling in 2014, top OPEC exporter Saudi Arabia urged fellow members not to prop up the market and to try to knock out competing sources like U.S. shale, which, because it has higher production costs, had to cut output when prices fell. In reports this week, The International Energy Agency and the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries have raised by at least 200,000 barrels per day (bpd) their estimates of demand for
The 3 biggest oilfield service providers are looking to weather the downtown by being in better positions now than they have been in prior cycles. Schlumberger, Baker Hughes, And Halliburton Playing The Downturn Playbook By: Seeking Alpha Schlumberger (NYSE:SLB), Halliburton (NYSE:HAL), and Baker Hughes (NYSE:BHI), the big 3 of oil services industry, should be able to weather the current downturn better than the prior cycles. There are a number of reasons why these companies should perform better. Firstly, due to the efficiency improvements and restructuring efforts, these companies are likely to see shallower decremental margins. Secondly, a higher level of North American service providers operating near breakeven create a higher floor on pricing as marginal capacity leaves the market sooner, and lastly mergers and acquisitions particularly HAL/BHI merger. The big 3, supported by a 400bps reduction in capex/sales (Source: Morgan Stanley), have become increasingly efficient over the
In a Texas city where oil is the lifeblood, Midlands economy has endured the oil price slump and some sectors have even thrived. Midland: Weathering the Downturn in Crude Oil Prices By: Gene Lockard (Rigzone) With crude oil prices at their lowest levels in years, municipalities that depend primarily on the oil and gas industry for their economic vitality are suddenly at risk of seeing drastic slowdowns in the local economy, and possibly some red ink. One such city is Midland, Texas, an oil and gas town like few others. Oil is its lifeblood, and throughout its history, the Tall City has experienced many up-and-down cycles in the energy industry. So, how is it weathering the current one? The short answer is that months after oil prices first began to slump, the city itself is doing fine so far. In fact, a relatively short-term slowdown would not be completely unwelcomed, since it would allow the city to catch its breath, Midland Texas Chamber of Commerce Executive Vice President of
Oil firms in North Dakota are planning to retain their workers, hoping to be prepared for a rebound in prices. Many Oil Firms Plan No North Dakota Layoffs Despite Cheap Oil By: Ernest Scheyder (Reuters) WILLISTON, N.D., Feb 4 (Reuters) - Halliburton, Statoil ASA, Hess Corp and other North Dakota energy companies have decided, for now, not to lay off staff in the No. 2 U.S. oil producing state, hoping to be prepared for any prolonged rebound in crude prices. Many oil producers and their contractors are trying to strike a balance between cutting costs and maintaining workforce reserves after a more-than 50 percent drop in oil prices since last June. The drop has made some oil patch investors anxious that North Dakota could experience a third oil bust after slumps in the 1950s and 1980s. Local business leaders, though, say theyre confident the states economy can abide the slowdown. Indeed, oil prices are nothing if not volatile, up about 19 percent in the past four trading days after
Caroline Valetkevitch of Reuters reports on the factors that contributed to climbing stocks and rebounding oil prices. MA, Higher Oil Prices Fuel Wall Streets Rally By: Caroline Valetkevitch (Reuters) U.S. stocks climbed on Thursday as energy shares bounced with oil prices, while news Pfizer would buy Hospira in a massive deal further boosted the market. The SP energy index .SPNY jumped 1.5 percent as oil prices rebounded sharply from a rout in the previous session. U.S. crude CLc1 rose 4.2 percent to settle at $50.48 following increased violence in producer Libya and on an expected boost in oil demand from Chinas central bank easing. Some euro zone concerns eased as well. Greece proposed a bridging program until the end of May to allow time for debt talks, vowing to do everything in its power to avoid default. On Wednesday, the European Central Bank abruptly said it would stop accepting Greek bonds in return for funds. The markets trying to get its hands around whats going on in
Ross McCracken reports on why shale is in the best position to benefit quickly from a recovery in oil prices. Energy Economist: Shale oils response to prices may call for industry re-evaluation By: Ross McCracken (Platts Energy Economist) Global crude oil production has only fallen in six years since 1984 and then generally as a result of geopolitical disruptions to supply or restraint by OPEC, rather than as a reaction to price. This is because the conventional oil industry has a strong lagged cyclical dimension, as evidenced by the 300,000 b/d of new oil slated to come on-stream in the US Gulf of Mexico this year. This output is the result, in some cases, of exploration more than a decade back and investment decisions five to six years ago. Current production is governed not by the initial capital cost but by operational costs. WoodMackenzie has estimated that, based on 2,222 oil fields, representing total liquids output of 75 million b/d, only 190,000 b/d of oil production is cash
Continental CEO Harold Hamm is calling on producers to cut spending in order for oil prices to rebound quickly. Oil Will Recover Once Producers Quit Spending, Hamm Says By: Harry Weber (Bloomberg) (Bloomberg) -- Oil prices will recover as early as the first half of this year as producers cut back, Continental Resources Inc. founder and CEO Harold Hamm said Wednesday. Hamm said Continental, the largest leaseholder and producer in the Bakken shale play of North Dakota and Montana, can weather low crude prices forever as it idles wells. He expects other drillers to cut spending by 50 to 75 percent, in line with Continentals announced reductions. A lot of people think, well, if you start drilling, youve got about a six-month process before you can slow down, Hamm said in an interview at the Argus Americas Crude Summit in Houston. Wrong. Because after all, you drill that well, it takes about a month to drill it, or 25 days. You dont have to complete it. Spending at Oklahoma City-based
Baker Hughes CEO Martin Craighead is choosing to emphasize the cyclical nature of the oil and gas industry with optimism that the slumping industry will recover like it has many times in the past. Baker Hughes Incorporated Sees a Light Amid Oil Market Darkness By: Matt DiLallo (Motley Fool) Oil-field services provider Baker Hughes (NYSE: BHI ) recently reported strong fourth-quarter results. Unfortunately, those results were overshadowed by an increasingly uncertain short-term outlook as a result of plunging oil prices. However, CEO Martin Craighead sees the pain of the downturn leading to long-term gains for the industry. Here we go again In opening comments during the companys quarterly conference call, Craighead emphasized the industrys cyclical nature: [...] our industry is clearly in the early stages of a down cycle, the same sort of cycle we enter once or twice a decade. As with past cycles, the early days are always marked with a high degree of uncertainty -- which customers
Rapidly declining oil prices continue to have negative effects on the energy industry as the biggest firms cut spending and employees. Amid US Oil Price Crash, Cost Cutting Ripples Through Industry By: Edward McAllister (Reuters) NEW YORK, Jan 16 (Reuters) - Any lingering doubt about the depth of the crisis facing the U.S. energy industry is quickly evaporating as even the biggest firms slash spending amid the steepest oil price crash since the recession, sending ripples across the vast sector. In a stark sign of how a sudden, 60 percent drop in oil prices is biting, oil services giant Schlumberger Ltd on Thursday said it will reduce spending this year by 25 percent and fire 9,000 workers worldwide, surprising investors with the size of the cuts. As activity slows and drillers idle rigs at the fastest pace in more than 20 years, the magnitude and speed of the changes are surprising firms that provide some of the raw materials and equipment essential to drilling that even two months