Friday, January 17, 2014

Friday -- Part I -- SLB Raises Their Dividend 28 Percent; Life Is Tough For Shell

I remember Rush designating Fridays as the day for his listeners. He said he would take calls on any subject, and then seldom took calls. I guess it will be the reverse for me.

Today is my day, dispensed with the meds, and will go gonzo. Well, not really, but it will be different.

I will "re-fresh" as I go along. If you don't like the constant refreshing, come back in 45 minutes. I should be done by then.

I went to bed early last night, maybe about 11:00 p.m. I was eager to get up this morning. I looked forward to Friday all week: SLB would report earnings.

Disclaimer: this is not an investment site. Do not make any investment decisions based on anything you read here or anything you think you might have read here.

Wow, what a surprise! SLB reports earnings which looked okay on first glance and raised their dividend 28%. I will come back to SLB later. Memo to self: put some of this in bold.
Schlumberger beats by $0.02, reports revs in-line: Reports Q4 (Dec) earnings of $1.35 per share, excluding non-recurring items, $0.02 better than the Capital IQ Consensus Estimate of $1.33; revenues rose 7.4% year/year to $11.91 bln vs the $11.98 bln consensus. 
The market hit a new high (apparently) this week, but my energy portfolio was mostly down. As I've said before, when the market is down, or the energy market is down, I generally don't look at individual stocks, and I definitely don't look at my portfolio unless I have something specific to do. Today, I will watch SLB.

The pull back in energy has been wonderful for investors: an opportunity to get in. The pull back may not be so good for mineral owners, but that's on a case-by-case basis. I don't own any minerals, so I wouldn't know.

It will be interesting to see how Shell does today. It posted a huge profit warning.
Royal Dutch Shell expects profitability to be significantly lower than levels : Co updates on its expected 2013 results. Fourth quarter 2013 figures, which are expected to be published on January 30, 2014 , are expected to be significantly lower than recent levels of profitability, considering current oil and gas prices and the downstream oil products industry environment.
Yeah, life is tough.

I normally bicycle to the Starbucks 0.75 miles (five or take a quarter mile) from the apartment complex where I have my man-cave. But it's impossible to get any work done there - too many interruptions by folks who think I'm interested in their plans for the day. So, now I've been riding to the Starbucks that is 4.5 miles from home. It might be 5.0 miles, but I don't like to exaggerate distances on the bike. I exaggerate everything else.

Folks discuss the merits of the iPad. Folks, there's no discussion. [Marilyn: "It's not true that I had nothing on. I had the radio on." ] I sleep with my iPad. If my wife is with me, the iPad is on the floor; if she is out in California like she is now, the iPad is on "her" pillow. Try reading the paper edition of The Wall Street Journal in bed. Now, try reading The Wall Street Journal on the iPad in bed. Case closed.

So, at 4:30 a.m. I am checking to see if SLB has reported. I don't know what time the inside traders got the news, but officially it was 5:00 a.m. central time when SLB reported. By 5:05 a.m. I was out of bed, and by 5:15 a.m. on my bike. I arrived at Starbucks at 5:49 a.m. (that is when I checked my cell phone time; the other times are estimates). I know it was 5:49 because I checked to see how long I would have to wait until this Starbucks opened at 6:00 a.m.

The bicycle ride was wonderful: cool, calm, and very, very dark. It was not quite "pitch" dark -- like the late evening walks in Yorkshire (England) many years ago. I would walk late in the evening; it was so far north, that it was dark by 5:00 p.m. On a moonless night, it was pitch black; one walked the trail along the river by memory. I learned to count the number of strides from a certain curve to the one gate along the trail. Some nights were miserably cold and I found respite in a small English church. I would listen to Arvo Part's Te Deum on my portable CD player, but I digress.

One last comment, then a new page. No, I'm going to quit here.


  1. What city is your man cave in?

    1. We moved to the Dallas-Fort Worth area last summer. Our apartment complex is at the corner of Colleyville-Grapevine-South Lake in the shadow of McMansions and DFW.