Thursday, October 18, 2012

Random Look At QEP's Concentration of Wells in Heart Butte Oil Field Today

Additional permits have been added since the original post.

Random look at two 5-well pads in the general area, in Heart Butte. These five are here more because of the river, but if you can access the NDIC GIS map server, it's quite remarkable; these all "radiate" to the northwest to extend under the river:
  • 21551, drl, QEP, MHA 3-31-25H-150-92,
  • 21552, drl, QEP, MHA 2-31-25H-150-92,
  • 21553, drl, QEP, MHA 4-31-25H-150-92,
  • 21554, drl, QEP, MHA 1-31-25H-150-91,
  • 21556, drl, QEP, MHA 3-31-25H-150-91, 
And then just three hundred feet south, is another 5-well pad:
  • 21557, conf, QEP, MHA 1-31-36H-150-92, 
  • 21558, conf, QEP, MHA 3-31-36H-150-92, 
  • 21559, conf, QEP, MHA 5-31-25H-150-92, 
  • 21560, conf, QEP, MHA 7-31-25H-150-92, 
  • 21561, conf, QEP, MHA 1-31-25H-150-92, 
Four new permits for QEP in this general area issued November 8, 2012
  • 24398, conf, QEP, MHA 1-04-33H-150-92, Heart Butte,
  • 24399, conf, QEP, MHA 3-04-33H-150-92, Heart Butte,
  • 24400, conf, QEP, MHA 2-04-33H-150-92, Heart Butte,
  • 24401, conf, QEP, MHA 4-04-33H-150-92, Heart Butte,
Four new permits for QEP today
  • 24206, loc, QEP, MHA 8-04-33H-150-92, Heart Butte,
  • 24207, loc, QEP, MHA 6-04-33H-150-92, Heart Butte,
  • 24208, loc, QEP, MHA 6-04-33H-150-92, Heart Butte,
  • 24209, loc, QEP, MHA 6-04-33H-150-92, Heart Butte,
One mile to the east, QEP has two five-well pads. Both five-well pads are in T149N-R92W:
Just to the south of these two five-well rigs, XTO has a four-well pad:
  • 20036, 2,331, XTO, FBIR Smith 11X-10, Heart Butte, t10/11; cum 115K 9/12; 30 stages; 3.2 million pounds
  • 23401, ros, XTO, FBIR Smith 11X-10E, Heart Butte,
  • 23402, conf, XTO, FBIR Smith 11X-10F, Heart Butte,
  • 23403, conf, XTO, FBIR Smith 11X-10A, Heart Butte,
This is really quite incredible.

TransCanada Temporarily Shuts Down Keystone Pipeline

Shut down to follow-up on a safety inspection anomaly.

The pipeline is expected to re-open Saturday.

[For newbies: this is NOT Keystone XL 1.0 which was killed by President Obama. Keystone XL 2.0 is a two-phase project, north and south segments, but that's another story for another time.]

Transports an average of 500,000 bbls of oil from Alberta (Canada) to midwest/eastern United States.

This should be interesting. That's a bit of oil taken off the market. Oil futures don't suggest this will be an issue.

Another DOE-Backed Solar Company Declares Bankruptcy


September 17, 2013: add Ecotality to the list And no one will be held accountable. The MBAs/CEO's will simply move on to the next gravy train.

September 15, 2013: another DOE failure; DOE defends its "list of 38."

April 4, 2013: I guess we can add Fisker to the list; will fire 75% of work force; CEO resigned abruptly last week.

December 9, 2012: Chinese company buys what is left of A123

November 30, 2012: to the list of "36" in the original post, we can now add another solar company that has gone bust: Twin Creeks Technologies. This is their $26 million website. I assume this link will break soon -- the website is a single page, completely white except for a "sunburst" icon and "twincreeks technologies" all in lower case. That's the website. I can't make this stuff up. Here's the story:

Mississippi taxpayers may have only an empty Senatobia building and some solar panel equipment to show for nearly $26 million in loans provided to Twin Creeks Technologies.
The California-based solar technology firm is liquidating, and a company that bought Twin Creeks' assets does not intend to take over its agreement with Mississippi. The contract called for Twin Creeks to invest at least $132 million and create at least 500 jobs.
November 15, 2012: to the list of "36" in the original post, add the Nissan Leaf plant near Smyrna, TN.

October 30, 2012: $300,000/A123 job with government stimulus (best figure; it could be worse; depends "how" one counts) --
Battery maker A123 Systems vowed thousands of new jobs when it received a nearly quarter-billion-dollar stimulus grant in late 2009, but federal job-tracking figures show only a few hundred positions were created before the company joined a growing list of federally backed energy businesses that ended in bankruptcy.
The latest quarterly report on file with a federal stimulus tracking database shows just seven positions created through the grant from April to June this year. Previous quarters’ job reports contained anywhere from a handful of positions created to more than 100 new jobs.
But even when the quarterly reports are combined, a total of 408 new positions were reported under the stimulus program since 2009, amounting to more than $300,000 spent for each new job reported.
October 26, 2012: huge criminal investigation story involving Abound Solar; in the list of 37 below; 
It was one of Barack Obama’s favorite green-energy companies. And green-energy companies, according to the president, are one of the best ways to facilitate economic growth.
Well, yesterday, The Denver Post detailed the criminal investigation of Abound Solar, a defunct solar-panel manufacturer in Colorado that was run on taxpayer “investments,” for securities fraud, consumer fraud and financial misrepresentation.
Abound shuttered its Colorado plant during the summer and filed for bankruptcy, leaving “125 workers without jobs and taxpayers holding the bag for up to $60 million in defaulted loans.” (Human Events senior reporter Audrey Hudson has already detailed the efforts by the House to investigate the company.)
October 26, 2012: green-jobs stimulus programs waste cash -- Labor Secretary's inspector  general --
President Obama’s green jobs training program, which was part of his stimulus, has failed on most key jobs measures, according to a new internal audit that found it was training workers who already had jobs that didn’t need green energy skills, and was failing to place new enrollees in jobs once they finished the training.
The Labor Department’s inspector general also said grantees who received the green jobs-training money did a poor job of reporting their results.
Only 38 percent of those who have completed training got jobs based on it, and only 16 percent kept jobs for at least six months — the key measure of success for the program.
And more --
About half were already working in the energy sector and wanted retraining, and half were potential new energy workers.
Of those workers who already had energy-sector jobs, the auditors said they were retrained, even though they didn’t need it.
“We found no evidence that the incumbent workers in our sample required services or training to keep their job or obtain a new one,” the investigators said in their report.
Original Post 
A huge "thank you" to a reader for sending me these two links.

Link here to The Foundry.
Satcon Technology Corp. announced the decision in a Wednesday news release. “This has been a difficult time for Satcon,” president and CEO Steve Rhoades said. “After careful consideration of available alternatives, the Company’s Board of Directors determined that the Chapter 11 filings were a necessary and prudent step, allowing the Company to continue to operate while giving us the opportunity to reorganize with a stronger balance sheet and capital structure.” 
Satcon received a $3 million DOE grant in January to develop “a compact, lightweight power conversion device that is capable of taking utility-scale solar power and outputting it directly into the electric utility grid at distribution voltage levels—eliminating the need for large transformers.”
This is the second taxpayer-backed green energy company to file for bankruptcy this week. 

From the same source, different link:
So far, 36 companies that have received federal support from taxpayers have either gone bankrupt or are laying off workers and are heading for bankruptcy. This list includes only those companies that received federal money from the Obama Administration’s Department of Energy. [This is unnecessary, in my mind. It's irresponsible, regardless of whose administration.]
The amount of money indicated does not reflect how much was actually received or spent but how much was offered. The amount also does not include other state, local, and federal tax credits and subsidies, which push the amount of money these companies have received from taxpayers even higher.
The complete list of faltering or bankrupt green-energy companies:
  1. Evergreen Solar ($24 million)*
  2. SpectraWatt ($500,000)*
  3. Solyndra ($535 million)*
  4. Beacon Power ($69 million)* -- see "update/correction" below
  5. AES’s subsidiary Eastern Energy ($17.1 million) -- see "update/correction" below
  6. Nevada Geothermal ($98.5 million)
  7. SunPower ($1.5 billion)
  8. First Solar ($1.46 billion)
  9. Babcock and Brown ($178 million)
  10. EnerDel’s subsidiary Ener1 ($118.5 million)*
  11. Amonix ($5.9 million)
  12. National Renewable Energy Lab ($200 million)
  13. Fisker Automotive ($528 million)
  14. Abound Solar ($374 million)*
  15. A123 Systems ($279 million)*
  16. Willard and Kelsey Solar Group ($6 million) -- see "update/correction" below
  17. Johnson Controls ($299 million)
  18. Schneider Electric ($86 million) -- see "update/correction" below
  19. Brightsource ($1.6 billion)
  20. ECOtality ($126.2 million)
  21. Raser Technologies ($33 million)*
  22. Energy Conversion Devices ($13.3 million)*
  23. Mountain Plaza, Inc. ($2 million)*
  24. Olsen’s Crop Service and Olsen’s Mills Acquisition Company ($10 million)*
  25. Range Fuels ($80 million)*
  26. Thompson River Power ($6.4 million)*
  27. Stirling Energy Systems ($7 million)*
  28. LSP Energy ($2.1 billion)* -- see "update/correction" below
  29. UniSolar ($100 million)* -- see "update/correction" below
  30. Azure Dynamics ($120 million)* -- see "update/correction" below
  31. GreenVolts ($500,000)
  32. Vestas ($50 million)
  33. LG Chem’s subsidiary Compact Power ($150 million) -- see "correction" below
  34. Nordic Windpower ($16 million)*
  35. Navistar ($10 million)
  36. Satcon ($3 million)*
  37. Nissan Leaf battery facility, Smyrna, TN (see November 15, 2012, update above) 
  38. Twin Creeks Technologies, Senatobia, MS ($26  million)* (see November 30, 2012, update above)
* Indicates filed for bankruptcy.

Of all the companies listed, this remains my favorite:
Twin Creeks Technologies. This is their $26 million website [update: surprisingly, this link is still up].  I assume this link will break soon -- the website is a single page, completely white except for a "sunburst" icon and "twincreeks technologies" all in lower case. That's the website. I can't make this stuff up. Here's the story:
Mississippi taxpayers may have only an empty Senatobia building and some solar panel equipment to show for nearly $26 million in loans provided to Twin Creeks Technologies.
The California-based solar technology firm is liquidating, and a company that bought Twin Creeks' assets does not intend to take over its agreement with Mississippi. The contract called for Twin Creeks to invest at least $132 million and create at least 500 jobs.
"Mississippi taxpayers may have only an empty Senatobia building and some solar panel equipment to show for nearly $26 million in loans" -- as you can see, this is not quite accurate. They also got a single page website with the logo.

Update: since the original list was posted, the source for this list, The Foundry, has noted some "corrections" which may affect the above list. None of the companies nor the government have contacted me to say the figures are incorrect. However, this from The Foundry:
Figures for four companies have been updated: Beacon Power received $43 million from the U.S. government, not $69 million as originally reported. Azure Dynamics received $5.4 million from the federal government, not $120 million as originally reported. Compact Power Inc. received $151 million as part of the stimulus, not $150 million as originally reported. Willard and Kelsey Solar Group received $700,981 in government funding, not $6 million as originally reported.
The following companies have been removed from the original list: AES’s subsidiary Eastern Energy, LSP Energy, Schneider Electric, and Uni-Solar did not receive government-backed loans, based on additional research. The National Renewable Energy Lab did received $200 million in stimulus funding, but it is a government laboratory.
Miscellaneous Reports of Green-Energy-Taxpayer-Supported Industries Waste List

LG Chem, Holland, Michigan (regional link may break); Volt-battery maker; no work; employees playing cards to occupy their days;

Seventeen (17) New Permits

Bakken Operations

Active rigs: 186 (steady). Oasis with ten (10).

Seventeen (17) new permits --
  • Operators: QEP (4), KOG (4), BEXP (4), Petro-Hunt (3), Hess, Oasis,
  • Fields: Ross (Mountrail), Sanish (Mountrail), Epping (Williams), Stockyard Creek (Williams), Ragged Butte (McKenzie), Eagle Nest (Dunn), Heart Butte (Dunn)
Comments: Another day with with no Newfield or OXY USA permit (they've each had one new permit since Sept 27th, I believe)

New wells reporting were posted earlier today; see sidebar at the right.

Several wells canceled:
  • 23842, PNC, BEXP, Bugs 27-3TFH, Poe,
  • 23841, PNC, BEXP, Bugs 27-22 4H, Poe, 
  • 23265, PNC, Hess, GO-Seaton 156-98-0706H-3, Wheelock, 
  • 21882, PNC, Petro-Hunt, Dullum Family Trust 157-100-2C-1-1, Red River
Of eight permits renewed today, ERF renewed seven.

When Four Americans Are Killed in A Terrorist Attack --- It's Not Optimal -- The President 0n Comedy Central -- Nothing To Do With The Bakken

Link here.
President Barack Obama, during an interview to be shown on Comedy Central, has responded to a question about his administration's confused communication after the Benghazi attack, by saying: 'If four Americans get killed, it’s not optimal.'
I'll be off the net for an hour or so. When I find a place to watch the baseball game AND blog I will post today's new permits. [Detroit sweeps New York; St Louis takes 3-1 lead over San Francisco.]

Meanwhile, the link. Sad. Incredible. If I'm taking the comments out of context, I apologize.

Another Major Pipeline Project Announced; NuStar Niobrara to Wichita Falls,Texas

Link to Oil and Gas Journal.

Data points:
  • NuStar Energy LP affiliate NuStar Logistics LP
  • Niobrara Falls Project
  • crude oil pipeline
  • from near  Platteville and Watkins, CO
  • to Wichita Falls, TX
  • delivering crude oil to facilities along the way: Suncor Energy, Denver; Valero Energy, McKee, TX; Valero Energy, Ardmore, OK 
  • possibly access the Nederland-Beaumont, TX mkt
  • possibly access the Cushing hub
  • would also be able to transport Granite Wash and Permian Basin crude to Nustar's Dixon, TX, tank farm
  • the NuStar Colorado 10-inch pipeline: 75,000 bopd capacity
  • the NuStar Wichita Falls 14-inch pipeline: 130,000 bopd capacity

On Tap For Friday

BHI and SLB report 3Q12 earnings. See below.

Wells Coming Off Confidential List Tomorrow, Friday
  • 21407, 368, MRO, Opal Holte USA 24-20H, Strandahl, t6/12; cum 1K 9/12; 30 stages; 2.5 million lbs;
  • 22218, 804, Petro-Hunt, Roen 152-102-10C-3-1H, Elk, t7/12; cum 24K 9/12; 28 stages. 2.9 million lbs;
  • 22480, 749,  Hess, LK-Hamilton 146-97-3526H-2, Little Knife, t9/12; cum ---
  • 22521, drl,  XTO, Gravgaaard 13-24-1H, Midway,
The October, 2012, Director's Cut should be posted any day now.

From Yahoo!Finance In-Play:
Schlumberger beats by $0.01, reports revs in-line: Reports Q3 (Sep) earnings of $1.08 per share, ex items, $0.01 better than the Capital IQ Consensus Estimate of $1.07; revenues rose 11.1% year/year to $10.61 bln vs the $10.66 bln consensus. Schlumberger recorded charges of $0.02 per share in each of the third and second quarters of 2012 and the third quarter of 2011. 

Baker Hughes misses by $0.12, misses on revs: Reports Q3 (Sep) earnings of $0.73 per share, excluding non-recurring items, $0.12 worse than the Capital IQ Consensus Estimate of $0.85; revenues rose 3.2% year/year to $5.23 bln vs the $5.41 bln consensus. "For Q3, Baker Hughes' revenue was flat, despite a drop in U.S. and international rig counts. However, our margins were impacted by the well-known imbalance in the North American Pressure Pumping business. Additionally, activity was less than planned in several key geomarkets for Baker Hughes, resulting in an unfavorable mix. The clearest example is Canada, where the seasonal return of activity was nearly 30 percent less than this time last year. Internationally, the collective rig count in Brazil, Colombia, and Norway was down 17 percent compared to the last quarter, and these are all meaningful markets for Baker Hughes. In the fourth quarter, activity levels in our International segments are projected to rebound."

Faux Environmentalists Take Their Collective Eyes Off the Ball

While faux environmentalists up and down the East Coast are concerned about fracking in the oil industry, it turns out "they" have an immediate, proven problem -- a problem that has been going on for decades, and it took a nine-year study ... 

Headline: fertilizer, sewage damage critical ecosystem, study finds

Link to Boston Global here.
... stark evidence in an unusual scientific experiment that demonstrates the profound damage fertilizers and sewage can wreak on marshes that are critical for protecting young ­marine life and blunting the sea’s fury.
The nine-year study, conducted in the golden-hued Plum Island estuary and published Wednesday in the journal Nature, is the first to show that marshes may be crumbling from the inside out from a massive overload of nutrients.
“This idea that everyone has to have a bright green lawn is part of what is killing the coast,’’ said lead ­researcher Linda Deegan of the Marine Biological Laboratory Ecosystems Center. “Even if you are 25 miles from the coast, it sinks down into the ground ­water and makes it there.”
Yup.  Profound damage.

Didn't even make the front page of the Boston Globe.

Wow! Google Misses Big; Shares Hammered


Later, 9:12 pm: Wrong: the trading was halted per Google's request. Right: the earnings/press release was released ahead of schedule by mistake.

Original Post
From Yahoo!

Trading halted (per rules, I believe). News pending? Pre-announced early? My hunch is someone pushed the "send" button prematurely. The press release was posted in draft and then someone accidentally posted it.
Disclaimer: this is not an investment site. 

Fiscal Cliff: Big Banks Have Big Worry

It's called "mark to market."

If the tax breaks are not extended, huge drop in the share market is anticipated. It could be 2008 all over again where banks are trapped by "mark to market." Great buying opportunity for the rest of us but the banks will be hammered.

The banks are telegraphing this about as loud as they can.

Thursday Links

Wow, wow, wow: I blogged about this some time ago -- Federal money --> grants to green energy companies --> green energy companies' donations to political parties --> there's a name for this. Here's the story.  This is not rocket science.

WSJ, page D1, tactile business cards. Really, really cool. "Business cards do high-tech work."

WSJ, page B1, Amazon is starting to publish its own books instead of just selling books by other publishers. Barnes and Noble will "boycotte" Amazon-published books.  Like that strategy will work. Now I know when I go into Barnes and Noble, certain books will be unavailable. Hmmmm. Good, bad, indifferent for Barnes and Noble, it seems short-sighted. For folks who harbor affinity for Amazon, and a neutrality for Barnes and Noble, that move pushes on the pendulum a bit, in a direction that may not be good for B&N.

WSJ, page B7, big story for ATT: federal regulators signed off on a plan that would resolve long-standing interference issues between ATT and Sirius XM Radio, and allow the wireless giant (ATT) to expand its high-speed LTE network. The plan was unanimously approved. ATT acquired this spectrum years ago but was unable to use it because of concerns it would knock out Sirius's satellite radio service. The plan would allow ATT to use some of the so-called WCS spectrum licenses.  The two companies (Sirius and ATT) presented a compromise plan to the FCC which then approved the plan.

WSJ, page A13, "The Un-President"
So came the moment late in the Hofstra debate when moderator Candy Crowley looked at Mr Obama and asked: "Does the buck stop with your secretary of state as far as what went on here [the Libyan debacle]?"
Staring back, the president clutched for a second. HE looked like a fourth-grader being confronted in front of the whole class by Miss Crowley of all our childhood nightmares. That moment revealed the problem: At the core of Barack Obama's persona and his presidency is a constant instinct to deniability.
It's not my fault. He comes across as one of those smart kids who always had some elaborate excuse to disperse responsibility for anything bad in his vicinity. And so it was in his answer to Miss Crowley: "Secretary Clinton had done an extraordinary job. But she works for me. I'm the president. And I'm always responsible. And that's why I'm interested in ..." By the end, he said it was Mitt Romney's fault for bringing it up!
Great writing.  Good, bad, or indifferent, it it what it is. I didn't watch the debate; interestingly, this is the first time I've read about this little bit of give and take. Good for Miss Crowley. I didn't know she had that in her.

WSJ, page A13, Karl Rover: Obama Won the Debate....

CNBC: All Politics All The Time?

The lead story over at CNBC for the past two days: why are gasoline prices suddenly falling?
Even in California, where the average gas price in the state reached the highest level on record on October 9, prices are now a (sic) lower by about a dime. Nationally, on average, gasoline prices have fallen 5 cents since last Wednesday to $3.76 a gallon. 
Meanwhile, the huge jump in jobless claims, reported today, is buried about six stories down.

I posted this on Monday, September 17, 2012:
So, if the outlook is so downbeat, why am I in a good mood about the stock market? A buying opportunity. And where do I find best buying opportunities? What do I like? High-dividend payers. Energy. Railroads. I think one of the bigger surprises will be the earnings coming out of Bakken-centric companies. Lots of talk about cutting costs. We'll see. The recent reports of Bakken premium to WTI is very, very interesting.
Today, Union Pacific Corporation, a railroad, reported earnings that beat estimates, and in an otherwise down market (at the open), UNP is up 1.5 percent, up about $2.00, or about $126/share.

Disclaimer: this is not an investment site. Do not make any investment decisions based on what I write.

XOM, by the way, hit a new 52-week high yesterday.

The United States will increase taxes at the end of the year, and California will vote on increasing taxes on themselves in November. [The New France?] Meanwhile, Germany's chancellor Angela Merkel wants her country to cut taxes. Almost worthy of an April Fool's story, but it's accurate. 

Newsweek Goes All Digital

I track the demise of mainstream media here.
We are announcing this morning an important development at Newsweek and The Daily Beast. Newsweek will transition to an all-digital format in early 2013.
As part of this transition, the last print edition in the United States will be our Dec. 31 issue.
Now the spin:
Meanwhile, Newsweek will expand its rapidly growing tablet and online presence, as well as its successful global partnerships and events business. Newsweek Global, as the all-digital publication will be named, will be a single, worldwide edition targeted for a highly mobile, opinion-leading audience who want to learn about world events in a sophisticated context. Newsweek Global will be supported by paid subscription and will be available through e-readers for both tablet and the Web, with select content available on The Daily Beast.

Essentially, it becomes another blog, joining the rest of us.

Former GE CEO Was Right

  • The jump in jobless applications was the highest in four months.
  • The increase is due mostly to technical factors [that will make the unemployed feel better: "technically, you still can't find a job."]
  • The moving average rose, but "is still a level consistent with modest hiring." [one word: wow.]
  • And there it is: California delayed processing last week's applications [waiting until after the second debate, no doubt]
  • Applications are a proxy for layoffs; when they fall consistently below 375,000, it suggests hiring is healthy enough to lower the unemployment rate. [Okay. It appears they've moved the goal posts: it was my understanding the magic number was 400,000. Chester called me on that several months ago and that's why I put the magic number in bold at the top every week when the joblessness claims come out. I won't change the "magic number."]
Original Post

Remember: the magic number is 400,000.

It will be interesting to see how Bloomberg spins the jobs story today. [As usual, I type the data points as I read the story for the first time.]

Wow: jobless claims increased by 46,000 to 388,000. The median forecast was 365,000. [The article does not say it, but I do believe this is the largest jump in some time. It would be interesting to know how long it has been since a jump this big.]

Here's the first bit of spin (note the bold): "Revised from 342,000 the previous period that was the lowest since February, 2008." [Got that word "lowest" in the first couple of lines -- pretty good journalism to be able to do that.]

And now we get the "one state" explanation: "The typical pattern of large increases in unadjusted claims at the start of the quarter seems to have shifted by a week in one state....." --- just in time for the first debates. Wow. Perfect timing. Great news just prior to the debates; now the real numbers come out ... due to that "one state."

After that, the story just gets worse, in terms of journalism: "Outside of 'that,' we're seeing very gradual improvement in the labor market."




I don't see any "improvement."

And a jump from 342K to 388K is hardly gradual.

But it is "very." Just not "gradual." It is "very" sad. The lost decade continues.

As usual, last week's figure (339K) was revised upward to 345K.

The report is not clear on this, but the "one state" that accounts for the "funny numbers" appears to be California. Shifted their data by one week -- to come in after the first two debates.

And now the boiler plate: "The four-week moving average, a less volatile measure than the weekly figures, rose to 365,500 from 364,750..." The "rise" was inconsequential, probably not even statistically significant, nor reproducible, but whatever, the four-week moving average is moving in the wrong direction.





"The average number of claims over the past two weeks....indicating little change in the pace of findings.

Just before the debates, we had had 43 unbroken weeks of unemployment greater than 8.0%. Now this report. It will be interesting to see what the new unemployment number is -- I think it gets reported the day before the election, but I could be wrong.

Also, by the way, waiting until after the first two debates: US debt will be downgraded, according to PIMCO.  Something about "political theater."

Another CBR Facility; NOG -- Operations Update 3Q12; Union Pacific Railroad Beats Estimates; XOM Wants Out of Iraq/Looks to Canada; XOM and BRK Both Hit New 52-Week Highs

From Yahoo!Financial In-Play:
Northern Oil & Gas sees Q3 production +96% YoY and +9% QoQ: Northern Oil expects third quarter 2012 production to increase ~96% YoY, and ~9% QoQ, resulting in an average of ~11,200 barrels of oil equivalent per day. During the first two months of the quarter, the weighted average days on production was ~55 out of a possible 62 producing days, or ~89% of potential producing days. Preliminary estimates of September's weighted average days on production appear to be consistent with the first two months of the third quarter. During the third quarter of 2012, Northern Oil had ~149 gross (10.9 net) wells completed and placed into production. As of September 30, 2012, Northern Oil was producing from a total of 1,104 gross (98.5 net) wells. As of September 30, 2012, Northern Oil was participating in an additional 153 gross (10.1 net) wells that were drilling, completing or awaiting completion. Northern Oil observed crude oil differentials tighten from ~$14 per barrel on average in July 2012 to ~$10 per barrel on average in August 2012, and expects differentials to average between $10 and $12 per barrel for the third quarter of 2012. Lease operating expense (LOE) per barrel is expected to be ~$8.50 for the third quarter of 2012, driven by higher levels of production enhancing work-over activities.

Union Pacific beats by $0.02, reports revs in-line: Reports Q3 earnings of $2.19 per share, $0.02 better than the Capital IQ Consensus Estimate of $2.17; revenues rose 4.7% year/year to $5.34 bln vs the $5.37 bln consensus. Third quarter business volumes, as measured by total revenue carloads, were down slightly compared to 2011. Volume growth in chemicals, automotive and intermodal offset declines in shipments of coal, agricultural products and industrial products. The co repurchased 3.1 mln shares in Q3 at an average share price of $122.13 and an aggregate cost of $378 mln.

Canadian Natl Rail and Tundra Energy Marketing signed MOU to construct a crude oil rail car loading terminal: The terminal will initially load 30,000 barrels of crude oil per day into rail cars - the equivalent of more than 50 tank cars worth - starting in the second quarter of 2013. The facility will have the potential to accommodate a unit train of 100 tank cars, with each train carrying approximately 60,000 barrels per day of crude oil.  [This is in the Williston Basin Bakken, but on the Canadian side of the border.]
Elsewhere, more on the Canadian National Rail crude-by-rail terminal:
...they will construct a railcar-loading terminal for Bakken crude oil producers in Manitoba and Saskatchewan.
The project will provide producers with “access to alternative North American markets for Williston Basin crude oil over CN’s network at a time when there is inadequate pipeline take-away capacity,” said Bryan Lankester, president of Tundra, a company that handles crude on behalf of producers.
Another link to this CN story here:
Canadian National Railway Co. (CN) and Tundra Energy Marketing Ltd. agreed to build a crude oil rail terminal near Cromer, Man., to transport Bakken crude oil for producers in Manitoba and Saskatchewan.
UNP shares have a great day. One supposes BNI is doing as well. Unfortunately we really won't know: BNI is owned by Berkshire Hathaway (Warren Buffett). Berkshire Hathaway hit a new 52-week high today (although it has pulled back a bit since).  XOM also hit a new 52-week high today.


XOM looking to pull out of Iraq. MSN Money thoughts on XOM's purchase of Celtic in Alberta gas-rich shale. I can't find the link now, but in today's print edition of the WSJ, the analyst suspects XOM is trying to average down the price it has paid for natural gas assets in the past. No one mentions the nitrogen fracking technology.

Back to the XOM/Iraq story:
Exxon Mobil wants to leave its flagship Iraqi oil project after upsetting Baghdad by signing a deal last year with the autonomous northern Kurdish region, which the central government deemed illegal.
It wants to leave its contract to develop the giant West Qurna-1 oilfield in southern Iraq , diplomatic sources said on Thursday, because of concerns over the profitability of the project.
Wow, how much did they pay for that "opportunity"? How much would it cost to develop that project? If XOM can't make money in Iraq with Brent oil $20 more/barrel than WTI, one really has to wonder. 

Profitability? or irritation over Iraq's attitude regarding Kurdistan? I think it's more of the latter. XOM not interested in getting involved in a civil war between Baghdad and Mosul.