Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Back To 59 Active Rigs In North Dakota -- August 8, 2017

Making America great again: GALLUP: U.S. Small-Business Owners' Optimism Highest in 10 Years ---http://www.gallup.com/poll/215048/small-business-owners-optimism-highest-years.aspx?g_source=ECONOMY&g_medium=topic&g_campaign=tiles

Connecting the dots? Maybe this sheds light on the recently announced Toyota-Mazda joint venture, sent to me by a reader: Mazda announces breakthrough in long-coveted engine technology ---
Back to the Bakken

Active rigs:

Active Rigs593473193182

RBN Energy: changes afoot in sourcing of crude for Asian refiners.

Gusher: a gusher of cash at Suncor. Oil sandsproducer has lost its luster to hot shale drillers but its ability to generate cash is the envy of them all. Link at Wall Street Journal.
Canada’s oil sands are dirty, costly and the opposite of fast-money shale drilling, but the companies that mine them generate gushers of cash and are some of the biggest bargains in the stock market right now.

Canada’s Suncor Energy SU 0.06% is among the world’s higher-cost producers of oil. By all rights it should have scaled back its ambitions during the last few difficult years. Instead, it did the opposite, buying out partners on the cheap and plowing ahead with projects that could pay off for decades.

This came at a time when the shale producers, which sport flashy growth rates but devour cash, attracted plenty of investment. Now Suncor’s shares look undervalued at current oil price assumptions. If prices rise then Suncor is especially alluring.
Sage grouse.  Zinke Directs Agencies to Follow New Plan on Sage Grouse Protections. U.S. interior secretary’s order follows task force recommendations that potentially loosen conservation measures around mineral leasing areas. Link at The Wall Street Journal:
Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke has ordered his agencies to begin implementing a revised management plan to protect the greater sage grouse, a move that could undo some protections created under the Obama administration.
Among other things, the recommendations compiled by an Interior task force at Mr. Zinke’s request call for potential loosening of sage grouse protections around mineral leasing areas, using states’ conservation plans that provided more flexibility to potential economic development and using potentially increased cattle grazing in some sage grouse areas as a tool to protect the birds’ habitat against wildfire and invasive grasses.
Nuclear energy: South Carolina Seeks Ways to Salvage Nuclear Project. Governor looks to get at least one reactor completed after Scana Corp. abandoned the project. Link at The Wall Street Journal:
An energy company’s decision to abandon work on a nuclear project in South Carolina has left the state reeling and the governor seeking one of several solutions to save at least one of the two reactors.

Last week, Scana Corp. said it would walk away from its project to build two nuclear reactors in tiny Jenkinsville—after nine years and $10.4 billion spent—stunning local leaders and the 600 nuclear employees and 5,000 construction workers at its V.C. Summer Nuclear Station. The move left Jenkinsville, population 71, with an unfinished worksite the size of 1,000 football fields, while electric customers continue to pay 18% of their bill for a nuclear-power plant that may never generate a single kilowatt.

“I just hope that people who bought new houses, new cars, didn’t create a situation where they lose everything they worked so hard to get,” said Jenkinsville Mayor Gregrey Ginyard.
Banks: Banks Poised to Boost Buybacks and Dividends. Financial stocks have been strongly correlated to the yield on 10-year Treasurys. The link at The Wall Street Journal:
Financial stocks this year are more closely tethered to government bond yields than ever.

The tight relationship is an indication that traders are playing big-picture macroeconomic trends over stock-specific fundamentals. That focus could provide an opportunity for investors willing to look past the expected trajectory of interest rates as banks increase the capital they return to shareholders.

Higher rates tend to boost lenders’ profitability, so financial stocks often beat the S&P 500 when government bond yields rise and lag when they fall. This year the degree to which that is happening is unprecedented. This is evident in the six-month correlation between the performance of financial stocks versus the S&P 500 and the yield on benchmark 10-year Treasury notes.
"Global Warming" is dead. US Dept of Agriculture will no longer use "climate change" in its correspondence. New phrase: "weather extremes." Link at The Guardian.

An inconvenient truth, and I think we've found the problem: the major of NYC says the "subway system" needs more money. Helloooo....
.... the MTA has cobbled together an $800 million plan to fix the subways — and wants half of that from Gothamites.
No matter that the MTA’s own budget has increased by $3.4 billion since the governor has been in a charge, from $12.3 billion to $15.7 billion.
No matter, either, that much of that increase is due to the governor’s union deals. Payroll at NYC Transit, which runs the subways, has grown from $3.5 billion annually to $4.4 billion — a 26 percent increase, although inflation is up only 11 percent.

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