Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Five Days and Counting: NDIC Website Still Compromised; No Word From NDIC; More and More Looks Like a Chinese DOS

Note: On this date, I took the blog off-line. The NDIC website has been down for five days now. Without NDIC data, the website is hardly worth it. By the time the NDIC website is back up, I would have so much data to catch up on, it just might not be worth it. I'm sure I will bring the blog back up, but right now I'm so irritated and frustrated, there's every possibility I won't. The granddaughters will benefit. Smile.

If I do bring the blog back up, I will be much more "direct" with regard to my feelings about the Obama administration.

The Sequester

One nice thing about the sequester: one quickly learns what is important to the administration. 
  • White House tours canceled. Presidential golf tours continue, even a golfing trip in Ireland.
  • Nuclear waste cleanup at Hanford, Washington: 200 laid off; 2,500 furloughed, leaving less than 8,000 full-time government workers/contractors to do something a lot of folks would think is important.
  • Congress won't allow USPS to stop Saturday mail delivery.

Later, 8:48 am: no one will see this unless I bring the blog back up. But after five days of the NDIC site being down, it's too much aggravation to try to provide data regarding the Bakken. The blog served its original purpose. It was left up because a lot of folks enjoyed it, but based on their e-mail they were becoming as frustrated as I was. Time to move on. 

Original Post
Oh, well.

It will be a great weekend to get caught up. However, I will be traveling and if the NDIC website is down much longer, I'm going to close down the site. While traveling I won't have time to catch up. Not worth the aggravation. So, we'll see.

But, for now, the links.

First, part II of the Canadian rail terminals for dilbit, coming from RBN Energy.
The additional cost of shipping raw bitumen by rail is hard to pin down accurately but the infrastructure needed to handle heavy crude requires investment. PBF Energy who currently ship 40 Mb/d of raw Canadian bitumen to their Delaware City, DE refinery estimated that crude costs them $5/Bbl more to ship than light crude sent by rail from North Dakota. Canadian producer Southern Pacific’s plans to ship railbit with 20 percent diluent from Fort McMurray in Alberta to the Gulf Coast include returning the rail tank cars to Canada full of diluent that can be sold to reduce the roundtrip rail cost.
The WSJ Links

Section D (Personal Journal):
Section C (Money & Investing):
  • Wow, this is interesting. Venezuela is in trouble -- more than most folks know. Venezuela is short US dollars. Big deal? Well, yes, Venezuela importers (like those who import food) must pay for their imports with US dollars.  And Venezuela is running out of US dollars.
A glut of crude in the U.S. Midwest caused by a boom in output is starting to drain, keeping U.S. oil prices aloft even as global prices decline.
Pipeline and railway operators in past months have worked to expand the amount of crude oil that could be shipped from states like North Dakota and Texas to refineries on the Gulf Coast, one of the biggest oil-consuming hubs in the world.
"They are getting oil out of there, by hook or by crook," said John Kilduff, founding partner of New York energy hedge fund Again Capital LLC.
In recent weeks, the efforts have begun to yield results in the form of a decline in supplies in Cushing, Okla., which are a key factor in the price of oil traded on the New York Mercantile Exchange.
Chevron just took silver. That offers gold for investors.
A decade ago, Chevron's market capitalization of $70 billion was half the size of Royal Dutch Shell's. This year, though, Chevron has opened up a lead: Worth $232 billion, it is now the second largest of the Western oil majors, trumping Shell's $215 billion.
It isn't first time Chevron has overtaken Shell; it nudged ahead briefly in the depths of the financial crisis and last October. But this lead looks more sustainable—and points to important differences in the two oil majors' strategies and performance.
In broad terms, Chevron has managed to grow without sacrificing returns. This is no mean achievement when you produce more than 2.5 million barrels of oil equivalent a day, output from existing fields declines at 4% a year and much of the world's oil and gas is walled off.
Section C (Marketplace):
Chesapeake Energy Corp. won't be reincorporating in Delaware after all.
The Oklahoma-based company disclosed Tuesday that the state legislature had reversed a law that was meant to shield boards from activist shareholders.
That law required big, publicly traded companies incorporated in Oklahoma to put up just a third of their directors for election each year, making it harder for dissidents to overhaul boards. Chesapeake had helped draft that legislation in 2010, contending that such staggered terms were an essential defense against hostile takeovers.
But despite the law, activist shareholders managed to replace most of the company's board last year, with Chesapeake's consent. With the new board in place, Chesapeake reversed its stance on the staggered-terms law. The company said this January that if it the law wasn't overturned, the company would seek to reincorporate in Delaware, which doesn't require staggered terms for directors.
Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin signed legislation March 5 amending state law to drop the staggered-terms requirement.
  • Skepticism reigns over Mexico's waters. Government considers how to attract investment in oil fields, 75 years after expropriation. "Don't stick your neck out."When you read the story, it makes me think of the Obama debacle in our own off-shore oil industry. See yesterday's graph to see what I'm talking about. There are multiple ways to destroy an industry: Mexico does it one way; Obama does it another.
Section A:
  • Cyprus stories throughout the paper; no links; easy to find. But three thoughts come to mind:
1) Cyprus called EU's bluff. Now the EU is scrambling we learn that
2) the Cyprus banking industry is used to launder Russian money
Today, on the networks and the internet, not yet reported in the print media, Russia is considering offering its own bailout. The obvious question: 3) how much is it worth to Russia to keep the laundry open in Cyprus? This is not rocket science.
  • Jobless aid shrinks unevenly; as much as 86 weeks in California, North Carolina, and Nevada; only 40 weeks in the Midwest (ND, SD, NE, KS, OK, WY, UT, MN, IA)
  • FDA scraps graphic labels on cigarettes; cigarettes will kill and severely injure more people than fracking ever will; one must remember, the president is a smoker;
  • Philadelphians are going to see huge increase on their personal property; and so it goes. Another blue state. Cue up Connie Francis.
  • EPA emissions plan faces possible revamp, administration considers rewriting rules as trade groups say many plants would have hard time meeting limits; wanna see more unemployment? Let the EPA loose.
  • Sequester layoffs hit Hanford cleanup: Remember that story about all the radioactive waste leaking in Washington State? I guess it's not that big a deal. The 2% sequester in spending canceled White House tours, and not it's cutting back on clean-up efforts at Hanford: 200 folks will be laid off, and another 2,500 will be furloughed.
  • Regulator delays nuclear-plant rule: The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission on Tuesday delayed action on a proposed regulation that might have imposed hundreds of millions of dollars of costs on some of the country's older nuclear power plants.
  • Senate gun bill won't include assault weapons ban; no link; story everywhere
  • SARS outbreak in Saudi Arabia: Saudi Arabia not forthcoming about outbreak; male physicians cannot treat women; recipe for disaster; no link; hardly interested
  • Op-ed: the government now relies far more on fewer and wealthier taxpayers. No wonder revenues are lower; no link; won't change anything.