Thursday, December 26, 2013

Only In The Bakken ... "Our Own" Ron Burgundy


March 3, 2015: add permits for four "Chip Diller" wells

August 5, 2014: to the others, add these - Emerald's Dudley Dawson (Booger from "Animal House") and Joel Goodsen ("Risky Business"), see comment below:
  • 27485, loc, Emerald, Dudley Dawson 5-2-11H, Moline,  
  • 27486, loc, Emerald, Dudley Dawson 4-2-11H, Moline,
  • 28698, loc, Emerald, Dudley Dawson 7-2-11H, Moline,
  • 28700, loc, Emerald, Dudley Dawson 6-2-11H, Moline,

  • 27483, loc, Emerald, Joel Goodsen 4-32-29H, Moline,
  • 27484, loc, Emerald, Joel Goodsen 3-32-29H, Moline,
  • 28696, loc, Emerald, Joel Goodsen 7-32-29H, Moline,
  • 28697, loc, Emerald, Joel Goodsen 6-32-29H, Moline,
  • 28699, loc, Emerald, Joel Goodsen 5-32-29H, Moline,
December 27, 2013: a reader noted that the names of two Emerald wells come from "Animal House." I missed those:
  • 26669, conf, Emerald, Dean Wormer 1-33-28H, Moline, producing,
  • 26668, conf, Emerald, Dean Wormer 2-33-28H, Moline, producing, 
On that same well pad, three "Ty Webb" wells -- the Chevy Chase character in "Caddyshack":
  • 26665, drl --> conf, Emerald, Ty Webb 3-1-12H, Sheep Butte, producing,
  • 26666, loc, Emerald, Ty Webb 2-1-12H, Sheep Butte,  
  • 26665, conf (but well file available), Emerald, Ty Webb 1-1-12H, Sheep Butte, producing,
Original Post

Emerald Oil has permits for the following three wells ("Anchorman 2"):
  • 27334, drl, Emerald Oil, Ron Burgundy 3-23-14H, Temple, producing,
  • 27335, conf, Emerald Oil, Ron Burgundy 2-23-14H, Temple,
  • 27336, conf, Emerald Oil, Ron Burgundy 1-23-14H, Temple,
And, of course, here's a picture of the "real" Ron Burgundy....

For those who may have missed him on KX News...

Ron Burgundy, KX News

Spot Price / Futures Price For Bakken Crude Oil?

A reader asks:
Rose Rock/SemGroup has recently dropped North Dakota Sweet from its list of daily spot price for oil. Does anybody know of another source for this information?
I have no idea. It seems every time I find a source, it's only a matter of time before it's removed. Bloomberg used to post prices at Clearbrook (for free) but now it requires (a very expensive) subscription. 

Six (6) New Permits -- The Bakken, North Dakota, USA; A Whiting Red River Well Comes In Dry (No Further Explanation); MRO Reports A Nice Well

Active rigs: 186

Six (6) new permits --
  • Operators: Hess (3), Emerald Oil (3)
  • Fields: Hofflund (Williams), Temple (Williams)
  • Comments:
Wells coming off the confidential list were posted earlier; see sidebar at the right.

Wells coming off the confidential list tomorrow:
  • 25478, drl, CLR, Malcolm 2-20H1, Sauk, no production data, 
  • 25345, 1,852, MRO, Hunstad 31-13H, Reunion Bay, t11/13; cum 6K 10/13;
  • 25395, dry, Whiting, KG Ranch 21-21, Camel Hump, a Red River well, see also this well
That's disappointing. The Whiting Red River well, the KG Ranch was reported as "dry." There is nothing in the file report with details. They reached total depth (12,370 feet, pretty much all vertical) in about 11 days. The geologist's report simply said the well was waiting completion.

A Note to the Granddaughters

I'm sitting on the porch along the coast in southern California. It is 82 degrees a few miles inland, but here along the coast it is 79 degrees. Some of the locals suggest it is warmer today than it is in the summer. A beautiful day.

In between blogging on the Bakken, I am enjoying my Christmas gifts: munching on Tillamook cheddar cheese and crackers, and reading the new Salinger biography (authors David Shields and Shane Salerno). I'm a slow reader, and I like to take my time reading a good book but in this case it is hard to put the book down. The format is very, very unusual, but really "neat." To the best of my knowledge it is the only Salinger biography I have ever read; I know little about him. Without question, if one has never read a Salinger biography, I would strongly recommend this as the one to start with. I find it interesting that some seasoned Salinger fans were disappointed in this book. It makes me wonder if they read the same book I did. There is information in this book that is being, supposedly, published for the first time. The photographs are incredible.

Bakken Hiring Blitz As Boom Turns From Exploration To Production

Some time ago I was told that Burlington Northern was getting ready to hire a lot of folks.

Today, The Bismarck Tribune is reporting:
Oil-related companies are on hiring blitzes as the focus in the patch shifts from exploration to production.
Power Fuels: a subsidiary of Nuverra Environmental Solutions and one of the largest oil field service companies in the Bakken, put out its call for 300 new employees going into the holidays.
Needed employees range from commercially-licensed truck drivers and mechanics to support services positions in accounts payable, rental billing, credit and collections, information technology, and human resources.
The increase in production has brought need to other industries as well, like trucking, rail, pipelines and gas plants.
“BNSF is hiring a ton of new people,” Sanford said. “2014 is going to be a busy year.”
Ron Ness, president of the North Dakota Petroleum Council, said with 8,000 wells on the ground now, companies have to have the man power to service all of them every day.
“It’s reaching the point that production is getting as big as exploration type jobs,” he said.
And then this: the new jobs will be more permanent in nature --
According to the National Labor Exchange website, the need for wellhead pumpers has gone up 399 percent over the last year. The need for service unit employees increased 135 percent. These positions are long term jobs on the production side of oil and gas as opposed to the more temporary positions needed for drilling.
It will be interesting to follow "Oil Patch Jobs" up at the top on the sidebar at the right.

Disappointed In My Readers -- But Nothing To Do With The Bakken

Wow, I love to blog.

Some time ago I wrote that not signing up for ObamaCare will be the biggest (greatest, largest?) act of civil disobedience in the history of the nation, excepting perhaps the Civil War, though that was a bit more than civil disobedience, I suppose.

None of my readers wrote to tell me I was wrong. I am disappointed. LOL.

But the WSJ has come to my rescue. It turns out there was an example of civil disobedience in this country that was greater than refusing to sign up for ObamaCare. The Wall Street Journal writes in an op-ed piece:
The unraveling of the Affordable Care Act presents a historic opportunity for change. Its proponents call it "settled law," but as Prohibition taught us, not even a constitutional amendment is settled law—if it is dysfunctional enough, and if Americans can see a clear alternative. This fall's website fiasco and policy cancellations are only the beginning.
Next spring the individual mandate is likely to unravel when we see how sick the people are who signed up on exchanges, and if our government really is going to penalize voters for not buying health insurance. The employer mandate and "accountable care organizations" will take their turns in the news. There will be scandals. There will be fraud. This will go on for years.
So, there it was, prohibition. I completely missed that one.

On-Line Web Shopping; Amazon Sets Records discloses metrics around holiday sales... more than one million customers become new Prime members in third week of December : Co announced a record-setting holiday season for Amazon Prime. More than one million customers around the world became new Prime members in the third week of December. On Amazon's peak shipping day, more Prime items were shipped worldwide than ever before. The entire 2013 holiday season was the best ever for Amazon, with more than 36.8 million items ordered worldwide on Cyber Monday and millions of customers unwrapped Kindle e-readers and Kindle Fire tablets this holiday season.
  • Cyber Monday holiday shopping weekend was the best ever for Kindle Fire tablets and Kindle e-readers. 
  • With thousands of Tech Advisors on call Christmas Day, Amazon beat its goal for Mayday button response time -- the avg response was 9 seconds (compare with Obamacare website)
  • Amazon's digital media selection grew to more than 27 million movies, TV shows, songs, magazines, books, audiobooks, and popular apps and games in 2013. 
  • Prime Instant Video selection increased from 33K to more than 40K movies and TV episodes in 2013. Instant Video now includes more than 150K movies and TV episodes.
  • Prime was so popular this holiday, that Amazon limited new Prime membership signups during peak periods to ensure service to current members was not impacted by the surge in new membership. 
  • On Cyber Monday, customers ordered more than 36.8 million items worldwide, which is a record-breaking 426 items per second. 
  • More than half of Amazon customers shopped using a mobile device this holiday. 
Holiday Best Sellers ( only):
  • Tablets: Kindle Fire HD; Kindle Fire HDX 7"; Kindle Fire HDX 8.9" 
  • TVs: Samsung 32" Smart LED HTDV; Samsung 40" LED HDTV; Samsung 22" Slim LED HDTV 
  • Laptops: Samsung Chromebook; ASUS Transformer Book; Acer Chromebook
Disclaimer: this is not an investment site. Do not make any investment decisions based on what you read here or what you think you may have read here.

Speaking of Fees

From the print edition, Los Angeles Times, Tuesday, December 24, 2013, p B5.

The MoneyGram AccountNow Pre-Paid Visa Card (can you spell S-C-A-M?)
  • $9.95 monthly fee
  • $4.95 activation fee
  • $2.50 fee for each ATM withdrawal
  • $1.00 fee each time the balance is checked on line
The American Express Prepaid card
  • no monthly fees
  • no activation fee,
  • one free ATM withdrawal each month 

Whiting And Oasis Over At Seeking Alpha; Trainwreck Experiences

XOM is trading at a new high today; has solidly broken through $100.

Jim Cramer notes that EOG has a lot of insider buying.

At Yahoo!Financial In-Play:
The price-weighted Dow owes its outperformance to a handful of top-weighted names like 3M, Boeing, Chevron, and ExxonMobil. Fittingly, the four names fall under the umbrella of either the energy (+0.7%) or industrial (+0.6%) sectors, both of which trade ahead of the remaining eight groups.  
Union Pacific is trading at a new 52-week high. This one certainly is not a trainwreck.


There are only a few contributors over at SeekingAlpha I read any more regarding the Bakken. Actually, I may read or skim articles by other contributors but generally there is only a handful of contributors I "trust." Bret Jensen is one of them.

Today, Mr Jensen has two mid-size shale plays for 2014. I haven't read the article yet, so I know as much as you do at the moment. But first, the disclaimer: this is not an investment site. Do not make any investment decisions based on what you read here or what you think you may have read here.

Featured in his article today: Whiting and Oasis.

Michael Fitzsimmons mentions the Wall Street darling in the Bakken: KOG.


Great article on the DC ObamaCare exchange --  
But it’s not all bad. What I like is that I can access the D.C. exchange in twenty different languages, including Apache, Navajo, and Irish. Which is great because I see so many Irish here who have a heck of a time assimilating, what with the fact that they only speak Irish and not the King's English. (You can also receive notices in American Sign Language—l'd make a joke here but I might offend the deaf. But I guess since they can't read and need American Sign Language I might as well let one rip. But I'll refrain nevertheless.)
Maybe we should blame the federal government for this, but last time I looked (and at one point it was my job to do so) a government entity was only responsible for providing assistance in a foreign language if there was a significant number of people who spoke that language and had no facility with English. Of course, we can all quibble about what "significant" means in this context, but does anyone believe that it is at all conceivable that there are even ten people in the District who speak only Apache and need to buy their own health insurance? I would bet my entire net wealth that the number is, in fact, lower than that, if not zero. Ditto for Navajo and Irish. If there's anyone in D.C. shopping for health insurance who speaks only German or French and no English I'd be shocked as well. 
But while the exchange doesn't work, at least we can get our messages telling us our application has been "disposed of" in the language of our choice, although to be honest I do not know at all what this message means and English is my mother tongue. Does it mean that I have insurance? I doubt that since I never got to select a plan. Or that I've been approved to buy a plan? if so why won't it let me do so.

And ticker shock. USA Today is reporting:
More than half of the counties in 34 states using the federal health insurance exchange lack even a bronze plan that's affordable — by the government's own definition — for 40-year-old couples who make just a little too much for financial assistance, a USA TODAY analysis shows.
Many of these counties are in rural, less populous areas that already had limited choice and pricey plans, but many others are heavily populated, such as Bergen County, N.J., and Philadelphia and Milwaukee counties.
More than a third don't offer an affordable plan in the four tiers of coverage known as bronze, silver, gold or platinum for people buying individual plans who are 50 or older and ineligible for subsidies.
Those making more than 400% of the federal poverty limit — $47,780 for an individual or $61,496 for a couple — are ineligible for subsidies to buy insurance.
Actually, this is a non-issue. According to folks who have worked with "navigators," the "navigators" will tell folks to "make up their income" number. First of all, apparently it's not a felony and it's just an estimate anyway. On top of that, there are reports that the IRS will never audit any of this stuff. The folks I've talked to in Starbucks tell me one is a fool to be paying full price of ObamaCare insurance. The "navigators," they say, are there to help.

Thursday -- December 26, 2013

Active rigs:

Active Rigs18618619716278

RBN Energy: Part 2 of the two-part series on natural gas alternatives for the northeast.
For peaking customers, the jury is still out.  Although New England and Atlantic Canada desperately need additional supplies of natural gas on peak (natural gas prices at Algonquin Citygate for January are currently trading up to $20 /MMBtu over Henry Hub), distributed CNG and LNG likely do not make sense to solve a winter peaking shortage of the magnitude facing the region.  
The infrastructure costs for the CNG “virtual pipeline” delivery system reside largely in the trailers that deliver the product.  Mobilization of these trailers to serve significant on-peak requirements for only a few days or weeks per year would be very expensive per unit.  LNG may provide more peak capacity, but, like pipeline capacity expansions, the liquefaction, storage and vaporization costs associated with LNG would have to be underwritten by the market.  Given the reluctance of power generators in New England to make investments in natural gas infrastructure (the generators remain at risk for cost recovery of these investments), on-peak LNG infrastructure will likely not provide a viable solution given current market structure.
The Wall Street Journal

This is an incredible story; I've been posting short notes on this for the past wek or so. It's really quite incredible: a surge in web buying blindsides UPS, retailers.
A surge in online shopping this holiday season left stores breaking promises to deliver packages by Christmas, suggesting that retailers and shipping companies still haven't fully figured out consumers' buying patterns in the Internet era.
United Parcel Service Inc. UPS -0.29% determined late Tuesday that it wouldn't deliver some goods in time for Christmas, as a spike in last-minute shopping overwhelmed its system. "The volume of air packages in the UPS system did exceed capacity as demand was much greater than our forecast," a UPS spokeswoman said. Consumers were reporting missing deliveries from FedEx as well, although a FedEx spokesman said the company wasn't experiencing significant delays.
There are at least three story lines here for savvy investors.
After years of cuts in state subsidies and growing resistance to rising tuition, U.S. colleges and universities are starting to unwind decades of administrative bloat and back-office waste that helped push up costs and tuition. The State University of New York system shaved $48 million in the past two years by cutting unused software licenses and consolidating senior administrators. Disclaimer: this is not an investment site. Do not make any investment decisions based on what you read here or what you think you may have read here. 

CarpeDiem has talked about this issue many, many time: colleges are trimming staff and administrative bloat. My hunch: the ObamaCare mandate pushed the colleges and universities into action. ObamaCare is not mentioned but if one reads between the lines, it's the 800-pound gorilla.

ObamaCare deadlines continue to slip. My hunch: insurers will use this confusion to deny claims.

Max Baucus to China; Mary Landrieu, a strong supporter of the oil and gas industry and a strong supporter of the Obama administration (talk about cognitive dissonance), to energy committee in the Senate.

Fake knee surgery as good as real procedure. My hunch: insurers will sent a fake reimbursement check.

A Note To The Granddaughters

Flashback, March 29, 2006

I've really come to enjoy Blu-Ray this Christmas season. Reflecting on this, I recall a note I wrote some years ago when two DVD technologies were competing to be the ONE system:
HD-DVD vs Blu-Ray. Toshiba will release HD-DVD next month, and Panasonic will release Blu-Ray in September – battle lines have been drawn.
This will be very interesting to follow. 
To summarize: 
  • HD-DVD (15 – 45 GB): Microsoft, Intel (moved to Blu-Ray, Jan 06), Universal, Paramount (switching back and forth) 
  • Blu-Ray (50 – 100 GB): Panasonic, Apple, Porn industry (as of Jan 2006), Sony, Disney, Sharp, Fox, MGM, Time Warner, Dell, H-P. 
Note: Microsoft has delayed – again – its new operating system, called Vista – many issues. 
EU unhappy with MSFT trying to imbed Google-like and PDF (Adobe)-like applications – trying to shut down Google and Adobe!! 
But now, I wonder – MSFT is delaying Vista until after 2007 – I wonder if MST realized Blu-Ray most likely – and either Blu-Ray has to be added to Vista or at least thought about.
It was clear to me, back in March, 2006, who would come out winning: HD-DVD or Blu-Ray.

The 2013 Salinger Biography

I have placed a review of this biography at

I enjoyed Michael Clarkson's observations regarding same. 

New Jobless Claims Have Trended Higher Since September; Level Is Still Consistent With Job Growth

A quote from Reuters regarding the most recent data:
New jobless claims have trended higher since September, although economists say their level is still consistent with job growth.
This suggests to me there is still a lot of "fat" in the US economy, according to Reuters analysis. 

Reuters is reporting:
The number of Americans filing new claims for unemployment benefits fell last week to the lowest level in nearly a month, a hopeful sign for the labor market.
Initial claims for state unemployment benefits decreased 42,000 to a seasonally adjusted 338,000, the Labor Department said Thursday.
Claims for the prior week were revised to show 1,000 more applications received than previously reported. Economists polled by Reuters had expected first-time applications to fall to 345,000 last week. 
The following information was in the earlier Reuters story. It has now been removed from the article: unemployment claims are now in the same range as in the "early days of the 2007 - 2009 recession." They replaced that with a graph, but the graph is for this year only, conveniently not going back to the beginning of the Obama administration.

Trillions of dollars in stimulus and we are not farther along than we were "in the early days of the 2007 - 2009 recession. 

But Reuters continues to spin the analysis:
New jobless claims have trended higher since September, although economists say their level is still consistent with job growth. Other labor market indicators have pointed to strengthening job growth.
The four-week moving average for new claims, which irons out week-to-week volatility, increased 4,250 to 348,000.
The most amazing thing is how volatile these numbers are. I've talked about this before.