Tuesday, December 6, 2011

For Investors Only: Yet Another Article Extolling the Virtues of Denbury - The Bakken, North Dakota, USA

SeekingAlpha.com link here.

Four reasons Denbury is a buy at under $17:
  • The mean analysts’ price target on Denbury is $25 and JP Morgan is all the way up at $29 on DNR.
  • Denbury has a five year projected PEG of just .55 which is an over 70% discount to its five year average.
  • It has significantly beat earnings estimates the past two quarters and is priced at just 6 times trailing operating cash flow.
  • The company is selling near the bottom of its five year valuation range based on P/B, P/E, P/S and P/CF.
This is not an investment site; see disclaimer at the top of the sidebar at the right.

The Governor Thinking Big: $1.2 Billion For Western Dakota Roads and Housing -- The Bakken, North Dakota, USA

State link here.
North Dakota has committed $1.2 billion to address the impacts of oil and gas development in the western part of the state and help is on the way, Gov. Jack Dalrymple said Tuesday. 
Dalrymple and other state officials offered an update on the state aid available to the 17 oil- and gas-producing counties during a news conference at the Capitol.
From July 1 to Oct. 31, $312 million was allocated to help with infrastructure, water and housing needs, leaving $885 million of spending to come in the next 20 months, Dalrymple said.
This is quite extraordinary.

Additional data points:
Future plans are for Highway 85 to become an undivided four-lane highway between Watford City and Williston, a news release said. Remaining federal aid will be used for projects that include Highway 2 north of Williston and North Dakota highways 5, 22, 23, 40, 50 and 1804.

The Legislature also set aside $228.6 million for state highways affected by increased oil traffic. Projects include Highway 22 from Dickinson north to Highway 23, Highway 23 east and west of New Town, and Highway 8 north and south of Stanley.

$2 Billion/Month Being Poured into Western North Dakota -- The Bakken, North Dakota, USA

The Dickinson Press link here.
The changes and growth in the Williston Basin landscape since last year are simply phenomenal if not mind numbing,” states Bruce Gjovig, Director of the Center of Innovation in Grand Forks, ND, one of at least 25 people who made the trek to Williston. “Western North Dakota has the most dynamic market economy in the United States, and growth through construction, expansion, and oil activity is abundant every place you look. Everywhere there is a ‘now hiring’ sign at the same time housing is booming but not keeping up with job creation. This economy is a wild west mix of great opportunity, constant chaos, and severe challenges.”
A lot of data points in that article. This is the most incredible data point:
  • Oil and gas industry is pouring $2 billion/month into the Bakken
Other data points from the article:
It is reported that there are 200 rigs drilling around 2,000 wells per year in the Bakken, as North Dakota has moved from ninth to the fourth largest oil producing states with predictions that it will become the second largest oil producing state in the next year

There are more than 6,000 producing wells in western North Dakota according to the experts, and it is predicted that 25,000 or more wells will be developed in the next 14 years that will create more than 30,000 long-term jobs

Another Natural Gas Plant in the Bakken -- Whiting, Belfield -- The Bakken, North Dakota, USA

The Dickinson Press link here.
The Belfield Whiting Gas Plant, owned by Whiting Oil and Gas Corp. is located two miles south of Belfield, ND, just off of Highway 85. It is expected to produce between 30 and 35 million cubic feet of gas per day. There will also be at least 10 employees on the site once it is up and running.
This will add a bit to Whiting's bottom line, but more importantly, it will result in less flaring.

Biggest News Story of the Week Out of the Bakken -- The Bakken, North Dakota, USA

The Dickinson Press link here .
Enbridge Energy Partners LP will make an additional $145 million investment in North Dakota to expand crude oil capacity and add a rail car loading facility to accommodate the additional volume, the company said Tuesday.

The Houston-based petroleum company, which operates oil pipelines, said that it will increase the holding capacity at the Berthold terminal by 80,000 barrels per day and add a double-loop unit-train facility, oil tanks and other terminal facilities next to its existing facilities.
This story speaks volumes.

Enbridge is a pipeline company. Wrong. Enbridge has smartly realized that it is an oil shipment company. That alone is a huge story. I've opined before that successful companies remain successful by recognizing what business they are in. The railroads moved to a new level when they realized they were in the transportation business and not the railroad business. That insight resulted in development of container cars and intermodal technology.

Enbridge recognizes it is an oil shipping company, not a pipeline company. More on this later.

By moving to pipeline, this tells me that Enbridge sees some advantages in crude-by-rail shipments: first, railroad shipping adds flexibility, not only in giving Enbridge an additional way to ship oil, but also flexibility in destination.

But this is what's really interesting: this tells me that takeaway capacity is still an issue in the Bakken. No company is going to be adding capacity if it's not needed. A corollary to this is that that this suggests to me there is more recoverable oil in the Bakken than officials are publicly admitting.

Another thing this tells me is that Enbridge is listening to the public. The public believes that pipelines are inherently dangerous but accept railroads as being inherently less risky. Of course that is not correct, but that's what the public believes, and if the public is moving toward crude-by-rail, Enbridge will do the same. After all, Enbridge is in the oil shipment business, not the pipeline business.

This may be the top story of the month for what it says about the Bakken; it certainly is the top story of the week.

Look at the amount of money Enbridge is putting into this project: $145 million. That is incredible. Just one more example that the Bakken is for real. That represents the CAPEX for some of the drillers in the Bakken: at $9 million apiece, $145 could buy you 16 wells. Most companies share the risk in wells, so that CAPEX actually represents much more than just 16 wells. Pretty incredible.

One can read more of this story and what Enbridge is doing at Berthold at this link.

When Did They Know It and Was It Suppressed -- Volts' Exploding Batteries

AutoGuide.com link here.
Apparently, way back in June, General Motors heard about a Volt fire that happened three weeks after said vehicle was crash tested, yet it wasn’t until November that the company, or NHTSA disclosed there was a potential problem, urging both dealers and customers to drain the battery pack immediately following an accident.

As a result the public relations nightmare surrounding Chevy’s halo vehicle appears to be deepening, though a good deal of the blame in this case also rests with NHTSA.

Joan Claybrook, a former adminstrator at NHTSA believes part of the reason for the delay was the “fragility of Volt sales.” Yet she also believes that “NHTSA could have put out a consumer alert, not to tell them [customers] for six months makes no sense to me.”
I guess when the government manufactures a defective product, the government is not required to report defects.

If I read the article correctly, Government Motors did not report the problem, and then an agency of the government, NHTSA, did not report the problem due to the "fragility of Volt sales."


So Much for GM Buying Back Those Exploding Batteries

Ottawa Citizen link here.
"On the question of the buyback, I think Mr. Akerson was taken a bit out of context," she said. "He was talking about customer satisfaction, which is really what the whole program is about and we're serious about keeping our customers happy."
The quote was quite clear; it was not taken out of context. Obviously, they were shocked by the potential number of folks who might want to sell back their Volts. I doubt a used Volt is going to sell for very much.

Carbo Ceramics -- Nice Analysis -- The Bakken, North Dakota, USA

SeekingAlpha.com link here.

I don't have time (or 24/7 reliable wi-fi connection) to check every well file, but it's been my impression, most of the recent fracks have been all sand.

My hunch: operators are doing all they can to bring fracking costs down. My understanding is that short term, sand and ceramics are about the same with regard to initial output. Ceramics are better than sand in the long run.

That's what I've been told. My hunch is the jury is still out regarding sand vs ceramics.  Remember: they can always go back in and re-frac.

Off To The Races -- E&P -- Previous Estimates Too Conservative

Rigzone link here.
Barclays Capital estimates that global exploration and production (E&P) spending in 2012 will reach $598 billion, up 10 percent from the previous record of $544 billion in 2011.

Increased E&P spending during 2012 will largely be led by international markets with $438.8 billion, an 11 percent increase, while North America E&P spending in 2012 will rise 8 percent to estimated $159.7 billion.

Forecast spending increases are down from international spending growth of 20 percent and 31 percent in North America in 2011, but Barclays sees "considerable upside" to its current spending forecasts.
The numbers are staggering. Let's just hope they keep fracking in the Bakken. 

Wind Power Projects Die Without Tax Payer Support -- Nothing To Do With The Bakken

Bloomberg link here.
Construction of a $40 million plant in Cheyenne that would produce towers for wind turbines has been pushed back to next year.

Local and state economic development officials say there's no indication the project is dead but Worthington has not communicated any set date for starting construction.

They suspect uncertainty over extension of federal wind production tax credits may be a factor.
Well, duh.