Thursday, February 19, 2015

Enbridge Reports 4Q14 Results -- Returns To Profit -- Misses By 3 Cents -- February 20, 2015

Enbridge misses by $0.03, beats on revs : Reports Q4 (Dec) earnings of CC$0.49 per share, CC$0.03 worse than the Capital IQ Consensus Estimate of CC$0.52; revenues rose 6.1% year/year to CC$8.8 bln vs the CC$8.07 bln consensus.

Reuters via Rigzone is reporting:
Enbridge Inc, Canada's largest pipeline company, said on Friday it returned to profit in the fourth-quarter as new projects entered service. 
The company reported net income of C$88 million ($70.5 million), or 10 Canadian cents per share, after a loss of C$271 million, or 33 Canadian cents, in the year-ago period.
Adjusted earnings, which remove most one-time items, rose 13 percent to C$409 million, or 49 Canadian cents, from C$362 million, or 44 Canadian cents, in the year-prior quarter. The result lagged the 53 Canadian-cent average analyst estimate for the measure, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
Enbridge is restructuring its operations after late last year announcing it would pay out more of its profits in dividends. It is also pushing billions of dollars worth of pipeline and other assets into affiliated funds and partnerships to improve the cost of funding new projects.
Meanwhile, MRO reports saving money; Reuters at Rigzone reports:
Marathon Oil Corp said on Thursday it has so far captured $225 million in savings, citing streamlined shale drilling and completion processes and lower prices from oilfield service providers.
While many oil and gas companies forecast cost savings, Marathon said it is already seeing savings as it squeezes well costs in fields in south Texas and elsewhere and renegotiates service contracts in response to the steep drop in crude oil prices that have upended the sector.

The Land Of Ice And Snow: Kennedy Cold Front To Hit The Entire US Through First Week Of March, 2015

The land of ice and snow ...

Immigrant Song, Trent Reznor, Atticus Ross, Karen O

 The land of ice and snow ...

Every state in the continuous United States -- forecast for temperatures below "normal" through the first week of March, 2015:

I assume the "warmists" will record the temperatures around Brownsville, TX, during this time period (Brownsville is the "brown" area on the map above, south Texas). The rest of the states will be seen as "outliers" -- not fitting the theory and the data thrown out.

For All That Talk About Wind Energy, The Brits Are Up To 0.9% -- And Climbing -- February 17, 2015

For those following the wind industry, the big four are: a) the Danes or the Dutch (I always get them mixed up); b) the Germans; c) the Spanish (or was that solar? I always get solar and wind mixed up); and, d) the Brits.

We posted a story earlier that shows the Germans reaping less than 15% % of nameplate capacity from their wind farms. Maybe I was being a big hard on the Germans. Compared to the Brits, the Germans are doing great.

Last June, 2014, for the Brits:
For 56% of the month, wind was supplying less than 3% of the UK’s power, and this during a summer month when demand is low. Worse still, wind was generating less than 1% of the country’s needs for 11% of the time.
In terms of capacity, wind was working at less than 5% of its capacity for 28% of the month, and only got above 10% for 27% of the time, the equivalent of 8 days.

The lowest actual measurement was recorded on the 30th at 82MW, just 0.7% of capacity.
But things have improved, from 0.7% last summer, wind energy in Britain now accounts for 0.9% of all energy, on February 10, 2015:
It’s peak demand tonight in the UK, and wind is supplying just 0.9% of the country’s electricity.

Meanwhile, coal and gas are producing 68.4%.
0.9%. Wow.


Kill Bill Vol 1 & 2, Closing Credits, Malaguena Salerosa, Chingon

Oldest Profession Makes News In Bakken Oil Patch -- February 19, 2015

Reporting tomorrow:
Deere (DE), forecast 83 cents, before market open;
Enerplus Corp (ERF.TO), forecast 21 cents, before market open;

Other Locations Sweeter Than The Bakken?

Woman to plead guilty to prostitution in Minot, Dickinson. is reporting:
The brothels allegedly were operated by Loc Tran and Trina Nguyen (wihn). They are scheduled for trial in June on racketeering and extortion charges.
Authorities say Tran and Nguyen lured women from California to work as prostitutes in western North Dakota between 2012 and 2014.
Oh, yes, and Williston.

For all the stories on this issue, it's interesting where the "sweet spots" are in North Dakota. Williston seems to be one of the least mentioned.

Reach out and touch me:

Personal Jesus, Depeche Mode

How Soon Will This House of Cards Fall?

Germany stuns pundits: won't agree to Greece's demands. Clock is ticking.

MSNBC -- 55,000 Viewers?
I Can't Make This Stuff Up

Politico is reporting:
Earlier this month, MSNBC registered its lowest full-day rating in nearly a decade, drawing an average of 55,000 viewers in the all-important 25- to 54-year-old demo. In January, MSNBC's daytime ratings for January were down 20 percent in total and 37 percent in the demo when compared to the previous year. In prime time, total viewership was down 23 percent, while the demo dropped by 39 percent. 
55,000 viewers in the 25- to 54-year old demo. And they all live inside the DC beltway.

North Dakota #1 In Freedom Among The 57 US States -- February 19, 2015

There are two "grading" agencies at this link: John Mason and Mercator Center.

Most of the article covers the John Locke data. North Dakota scores well but not at the top of the list.

In the George Mason University's Mercator Center list, the #1 state... in "freedom" .... drum roll ... North Dakota. South Dakota is ranked #2. California, #49, and New Yor State, #50.

There must be something inherently wrong in the scoring system when the John Locke data scores North Dakota dead last in educational freedom. My hunch is it may have to do with the Law of Small Numbers: simply not that many independent school districts with a strong central state government.


But look at the rankings of California, New York state, and Massachusetts -- the big three when it comes to liberalism. One of the most conservative states ranks #1 in the John Locke list.

Huge, huge "thank you" to a reader for sending me this link; there's no way I would have come across this on my own. 

Enerplus With Two Big Wells - February 19, 2015

Active rigs:

Active Rigs127186182199171

No matter how bad tomorrow is: everything will be offset by the fact that Trader Joe's opens in Southlake, TX.

Wells coming off confidential list today were posted earlier; see sidebar at the right.

Wells coming off the confidential list Friday:
  • 21788, IA/SI, Enerplus, BMX 148-93-23B-24H TF, South Fork, no production data,
  • 25737, 1,278, Enerplus, Wind 149-93-07D-12H TF, Mandaree, t9/14; cum 98K 12/14;
  • 25738, 1,946, Enerplus, Sun 149-93-07D-12H, Mandaree, t8/14; cum 99K 12/14;
  • 26487, 3,302, Statoil, Hawkeye 16-21 2H, Todd, t1/15; cum --
  • 26702, 1,310, QEP, MHA 3-27-34H-148-92, Heart Butte, t1/15; cum --
  • 27514, drl, XTO, Guy Federal 24X-35E, Grinnell, no production data,
  • 28447, 55, Corinthian, Corinthian Lochner 8-4 3H, North Souris, a Spearfish well, t10/14; cum 11K 12/14;
  • 28571, drl, Roff Operating Company, Osterberg 2-16 H1, wildcat, far north, and east, about 6 miles northwest of Mohall, near Little Deep Creek oil field, a Madison formation area; if a good well, might extend Little Deep Creek east, , no production data; very, very interesting -- the geologist's report states that the target was the middle Bakken; that the wellbore entered the middle Bakken target at 6,350 feet (shallow); oil present; gas values ranted between 50 and 100; the dipping suggests that anticlinal oil trapping structures could exist and be exploited; awaiting fracture/completion; spud August 20; ceases drilling September 13; total drilling days, 26; short lateral (640 acres);
  • 28888, drl, Petro-Hunt, MM Wold 160-94-31A-5-2H2, North Tioga, no production data,
  • 29157, 945, Newfield, Rolfsrud State 152-96-29-32-13HLW, Clear Creek, t11/14; cum 34K 12/14;
Six (6) new permits --
  • Operators: XTO (3), SM Energy, Denbury, Sinclair
  • Fields: Elk (McKenzie), Parshall (Mountrail), Indian Hill (McKenzie), Cedar Hills (Bowman)
  • Comments:
Two (2) producing wells completed:
  • 27124, 1,053, EOG, Parshall 43-2117H, Parshall, t2/15; cum --
  • 28014, 221, EOG, Parshall 67-2117H, Parshall, t2/15; cum -- 
Dry hole:
  • 28376, dry, Armstrong Operating, First Creek 1,Tyler,
Several operator transfers.


25737, see above, Enerplus, Wind 149-93-07D-12H TF, Mandaree:

DateOil RunsMCF Sold

 25738, see above, Enerplus, Sun 149-93-07D-12H, Mandaree:

DateOil RunsMCF Sold

Route 66, Depeche Mode

Tonight on Highway 114 west I saw the truckers heading toward California. If I did not have the granddaughters, I would have been on the road heading west tonight. Or north to the Bakken.

The Northeast Electricity Grid -- PJM -- Is Likely To "Hold" -- February 19, 2015

I forgot to post this earlier today. A reader sent me a link to this article which reminded me of my oversight:

Natural gas fill rate (a dynamic link): -111.

Again, at the link, scroll to the bottom of the page, and look at the graph. I find this absolutely incredible. You really have to zoom in, but the current curve is very, very slightly above the 5-year average. With the amount of natural gas that is being used in this very cold winter, this is really quite remarkable.

Which leads me to the aforementioned article that a reader sent me earlier. Last year at this time there were concerns whether the PJM grid, the electrical grid in the northeast, would "hold" this year. It has and it's another interesting story being reported in Pittsburgh Business Times:
Demand on the regional electrical grid Thursday night and Friday will probably exceed the height of last year's uber-cold Polar Vortex, but PJM Interconnection and utilities say they're more than ready to meet those needs.
The electrical grid operator PJM Interconnection expects a peak of about 140,000 megawatts of electricity to be generated and delivered to customers Thursday in the Pittsburgh region and elsewhere in its multistate footprint, much of which is being battered by either subzero temperatures, snow or both.
That's about the same level as the Polar Vortex, when there was 140,510 megawatts for peak demand on January 7, 2014, after temperatures plunged below zero in much of the Northeast including Pittsburgh. PJM expects demand to go between 1,000 and 2,000 megawatts higher around 8 a.m. Friday after temperatures plunge to the double-digits below zero, even in some parts of western Pennsylvania.
If you think it's colder than the average winter and, even than last year, you're not imagining it. February is tracking 9.2 degrees below normal per day, when the average high should be 39.3 degrees instead of the 30.6 dgrees it is so far in Pittsburgh. The average low so far in February is 11.2 degrees, instead of the normal 23 degrees. Last year's average for the entire winter was 5.4 degrees below normal.
More at the link.

Foreign Investment Continues

Houston Business Journal is reporting:
Norway-based Yara International ASA and German chemical giant BASF SE confirmed they will build a major ammonia plant in Freeport to open in 2017 at BASF's existing property.
The companies stated that the $600 million "world-scale" plant will use hydrogen as raw material, which will reduce capital expenditures, maintenance and carbon dioxide emissions significantly. Yara and BASF said last year that they wanted to build the plant in Freeport but that they were still awaiting board and regulatory approvals at that time.

EVs: The Annual Cost Benefit Is Equal To About One Cup Of Starbucks Coffee -- USA Today -- February 19, 2015

From USA Today today: It is time to stop our green worship of the electric car. It costs us a fortune, cuts little CO2 and surprisingly kills almost twice the number of people compared with regular gasoline cars.
It is time to stop our green worship of the electric car. It costs us a fortune, cuts little CO2 and surprisingly kills almost twice the number of people compared with regular gasoline cars.
Electric cars' global-warming benefits are small. It is advertised as a zero-emissions car, but in reality it only shifts emissions to electricity production, with most coming from fossil fuels. As green venture capitalist Vinod Khosla likes to point out, "Electric cars are coal-powered cars."
The most popular electric car, a Nissan Leaf, over a 90,000-mile lifetime will emit 31 metric tons of CO2, based on emissions from its production, its electricity consumption at average U.S. fuel mix and its ultimate scrapping. A comparable diesel Mercedes CDI A160 over a similar lifetime will emit 3 tons more across its production, diesel consumption and ultimate scrapping. [One word: wow.]
The results are similar for the top-line Tesla car, emitting about 44 tons, about 5 tons less than a similar Audi A7 Quattro.
Yes, in both cases the electric car is better, but only by a tiny bit. Avoiding 3 tons of CO2 would cost less than $27 on Europe's emissions trading market. The annual benefit is about the cost of a cup of coffee. Yet U.S. taxpayers spend up to $7,500 in tax breaks for less than $27 of climate benefits. That's a bad deal.
More at the link.

Sir Charles Beginning To See The Light?

Washington CBS Local is reporting:
Barkley also said in the interview he might be leaning toward voting Republican in the 2016 presidential election.
“I am paying close attention to the political situation. I have always voted Democratic. But I like some of the Republicans this time around,” Barkley told Sports Illustrated. “I like Chris Christie. I like Jeb Bush. I like those guys.”
Speaking of which, the annual Sports Illustrated Swimsuit edition is now at news stands everywhere.

Beginning To See The Light, Lou Reed

Germany's Successful Wind Industry Averaging Less Than 15% Of Rated Capacity -- February 19, 2015

When I first started the blog, many, many years ago, I did not know what "nameplate capacity" meant. Don explained it to me.

Yesterday I was sent an interesting link from another reader on the "success" of the wind industry in Germany. Wow, this is quite incredible. If these numbers were being posted in any other industry in the US, some folks would be going to jail for violating SEC regulations or CEOs would be moving.

This is the story behind that "successful" wind energy in Germany.

Vernunftkraft is reporting:
Die durchschnittliche Einspeisung (arithmetisches Mittel) beträgt über alle 25.000 Anlagen hinweg gerade einmal 14,8 Prozent der Nennleistung. 
Yes, you read that correctly: "einmal 14,8 Prozent der Nennleistung."

NoTricksZone caught the story and posted the important data points with this headline: Germany 2014 Report Card Is In! Its 25,000 Wind Turbines Get An “F-“…Averaged Only 14.8% Of Rated Capacity! 

It looks like the wind is not blowing where the German wind turbines are. Without a doubt, the hot air is blowing in Berlin. 

Most disturbing, this final line:
One does not even see any real available baseload – a sort of reliable minimum output to rely on.”
Germany is also going non-nuclear which means a lot of coal-burning power plants to provide the baseload as well as provide electricity when the wind is not blowing -- which seems to be a lot of the time.

The Expense of Wind

But just think about that: wind is more expensive than coal in best of circumstances, when wind farms actually produce at their rated capacity. But imagine how much the wind energy sector is costing Germany taxpayers -- when the farms are producing at less than 15% rated capacity. I doubt the American experience would be all that different than Germany's experience.

Athens: A Portrait of the City in Its Golden Age
Christian Meier, c. 1993

The golden age of Athens: significant changes occurred after the Battle of Marathon, 490 BC. Tragedies were transformed, made "modern." Sculpture moved from kouros to critius. Vase painting emphasized Dionysius and maenads. And a particularly noteworthy change in politics in 487 BC, when an interesting alteration of the procedure for appointing archons was made. From then on, a fairly large group of men, probably one hundred, was elected -- ten from each phyle -- and nine archons were picked by log from among them.

Quite interesting. There's always an issue of term limits in US politics, but I've never cared for term limits, except perhaps for the presidency. The bigger problem for me has always been the lack of change (or more accurately, the very, very slow change in the leadership in the US Senate and House of Representatives. I am convinced that much of the gridlock we have (and gridlock can be good) is due to intransigent personalities of the demi-gods that lead the Senate and the House year-after-year-after-year. Wouldn't it be interesting if the top three or four leadership positions were determined by lot every year. We would have the same elected representatives in Washington, but the leadership would be much more dynamic. Boehner, McConnell, Pelosi, Reid have over-stayed their welcome.

A Note to the Granddaughters

Regular readers know that our older granddaughter is interested in marine biology. Hold that thought.

A few weeks ago she and I were discussing Socrates and Plato because that's what her class was studying. I had not thought about Socrates and Plato in a long time but there was one particular question that caught my interest. Coincidentally, completely unrelated, I was back in my "Greek" reading phase, re-reading The Wooden Horse: The Liberation of the Western Mind, From Odysseus to Socrates, Keld Zeruneith, c. 2007, which tackled the question I had: where did Socrates stand with regard to the issue of "gods" and how did he come to that way of thinking?

The Zeruneith book takes one from the Trojan War to Socrates/Plato. It turns out there is a new book that continues the story: The Lagoon: How Socrates Invented Science, Armand Marie Leroi, c. 2014.

Socrates, inventing science, could be argued, was the first "scientist." His area of interest: biology. He very specific area of interest: marine biology. 

Our older granddaughter was thrilled to hear that. 

Connecting The Dots

Right now, circulating in the conservative social media is a list of twenty Obama quotes that suggest to the compiler that President Obama is a Muslim. It's a pretty persuasive list, especially considering that the President has never defended his own religion, Christianity, with the same fervor and/or clarity.  I was not going to comment on the list, but I was reminded of it when I googled the spelling of Boehner's name and the first hit today -- the very first hit -- was of a Salon article: Boehner and Bibi's blunder: the  problem is much bigger than not giving Obama a "head's up."  

The dots now connect. The bigger problem -- and almost the only problem -- is the fact that President Obama is unable to come to terms to the "Islamist problem" and sees Netanyahu as directly confronting the president's religious upbringing and core beliefs.

No Good Deed Goes Unpunished; Looks Like Saudi Is Losing Market Share To Iran, Iraq, Kuwait, Even Angola -- February 19, 2015

[Saudi] shipments averaged 7.11 million barrels a day, down from an 11-year high of 7.54 million barrels a day in 2013 and the lowest in three years In December, exports dropped 5 percent from November to 6.9 million barrels a day.
China, Saudi Arabia’s largest customer in Asia, cut imports of Saudi crude by 7.9 percent in 2014, while it increased imports from Iran, Iraq, Kuwait, Angola, and U.A.E.
Saudi Arabia needs to keep exports at a minimum of 7 million barrels a day for the 860 billion-riyal ($229 billion) 2015 budget, he said. Brent oil must average $80 this year for the budget to break even, he said. Crude was $59.53 a barrel today.
The drop in crude exports explains to some extent why Saudi Arabia is offering discounts on crude.
Saudi Aramco, the state-run oil company, offered Asian customers the biggest discount on its benchmark crude in at least 14 years for January sales. It also cut prices for all grades it sells to U.S. refineries.
By the way, not all Saudi production is being exported. Saudi Arabia continues to increase the amount of oil it refines for its own use as its economy expands (Saudi uses oil to generate electricity and air conditioning use has increased significantly over the years).

BloombergBusiness has provided an update with regard to Saudi's increased production and is quite enlightening.
Saudi Arabia is boosting oil production, pursuing its policy to maintain market share as prices fall. Crude oil output is about 10 million barrels a day. That would be the highest since July and up from an average of 9.7 million barrels a day in the second half of 2014.
Saudi Arabia is keeping production high as it processes more crude at two refineries it started last year and burned more oil to generate power.
Local refineries processed 2.22 million barrels a day in December, the highest in any single month since at least January 2002.
Saudi Aramco, the state-run oil company, and partner Sinopec Group started a refinery last year at a plant at Yanbu on the Red Sea. It will have crude-processing capacity of 400,000 barrels a day. The company, along with partner Total SA of France, built a refinery of the same size at Jubail on the Persian Gulf. That plant, known as Satorp, had been running at full capacity since August 1, 2014. 
The Threes

A lot of things are done in threes. During the Cold War, the US nuclear triad was: land-based ICBM; submarine-launched ICBMs; and airborne nuclear bombs.

Likewise, President Obama has announced his three-pronged approach for dealing with ISIS:
  • kill 'em with kindness
  • provide jobs and job training
  • direct the small business administration to help ISIS jihadists start their own businesses
I can't make this stuff up.

Not Ready For Prime Time 

Earlier today a reader sent me an article on the Kennedy Cold Front moving through the northeast, eastern seaboard, and the southeast today. In a non sequitur I replied:
Obama is getting skewered with his strategy for ISIS: "kill 'em with kindness, find them jobs."
Obama used to have just one huge, huge problem: credibility. Now he has two more: relevancy (as a lame duck president); and, fathomless ignorance ("provide ISIS jobs and job training")
His inner circle is probably intact, though hard to say. Just outside his inner circle, his staff is jumping ship, starting to move on (Eric Holder, for example). Not because of the problems but simply because they need to start looking for their next job when Obama is no longer president.
  • amnesty stopped and it appears stopped on a pretty good basis; hard for Obama to win appeal easily
  • Ukraine not getting any better; US seems to be on different sheet of music than EU
  • huge, huge challenge with avoiding term "Islamist terrorism"; denying "Islamist terrorism" headlines alongside photos of "Islamist terrorists beheading and burning Christians alive
  • his global warming stance is perhaps a joke in Boston; and Agore nowhere to help the president out
ObamaCare case will be heard by the Supreme Court starting March 4
Obama certainly has his hands full; his staff is leaving; and, everything above is "status quo" -- who knows what unexpected event will happen next?
Sitting Pretty

First-Time Unemployment Claims Plunge -- February 17, 2015

The AP is reporting:
The Labor Department says weekly applications for unemployment aid dropped 21,000 last week to a seasonally adjusted 283,000. The four-week average of applications, a less volatile number, fell 6,500 to 289,750, its lowest level in 15 weeks.
It appears the cutbacks in the energy sector are not being counted.

Last week, new claims surged:
New claims surge; rise way more than expected; up to 304K; four-week average decreased to 289,750 (due to spurious unemployment claims of a couple weeks ago). 
The volatility is interesting, to say the least.

Most-Hated Retailer In The US -- Walmart -- Market Watch

Market Watch is reporting:

The headline/article was based on a poll. Take it for what it's worth; many, many story lines.

I was intrigued by this paragraph in the linked article:
Walmart does score higher in terms of customer satisfaction than do cable companies, many airlines and health insurance companies. 
What do Walmart, cable companies, airlines, and health insurance companies have in common. Four of the five are relative/regional monopolies.

But this is what all five have in common: Americans cannot live without any of them. Probably no other retailer has done for the American consumer than Walmart in bringing low prices (and keeping low prices) in America, as well as 24/7 big box store accessibility.

But even more importantly: if you can't find it at Walmart you probably don't need it. I don't like going to Walmart because the parking lot is too big, too busy; the stuff I usually "have" to get is at the back of the store; and, the checkout lines are way too long.

Hmmmm....for being the most-hated retailer in America ... it sure is busy. There's only one store that is busier (number of human feet / square foot): Apple retail stores.

Active Rigs Break Below 130 -- Now At 127 -- Falling Fast In North Dakota; EOG - After Missing Estimates Will Sharply Curtail Drilling -- February 19, 2015


February 21, 2015:
What Wal-Mart has effectively done is raise the cost of doing business for all retailers not named Costco, which has long paid workers well above minimum wage -- the average Costco worker earns $21 an hour. According to job site Glassdoor, the average Sears cashier pulls in $8.38 an hour, while at Sear-owned Kmart, it's $8.16 an hour. That's barely above the current federal minimum hourly wage of $7.25.
The average J.C. Penney hourly associate earns $9.16 an hour, according to Glassdoor. Instead of Wal-Mart shoppers and employees being the butt of Twitter jokes from teens, the higher pay may actually attract them to apply for gigs there instead of at Abercrombie, where sales associates only earn an average of $8.68 an hour, according to Glassdoor.
Original Post

Obama's ISIS strategy: literally "kill" them with kindness; offer them jobs, opportunities to start their own businesses. Meanwhile, Wal-Mart (Walmart) will give nearly half its workers pay raises. AP is reporting:
As part of its biggest investment in worker training and pay ever, Wal-Mart told The Associated Press that within the next six months it will give raises to about 500,000 workers, or nearly 40 percent of its 1.3 million employees. Wal-Mart follows other retailers that have boosted hourly pay recently, but because it's the nation's largest private employer, the impact of its move will be more closely watched.
In addition to raises, Wal-Mart said it plans to make changes to how workers are scheduled and add training programs for sales staff so that employees can more easily map out their future at the company.

Reporting today:
  • Linn Energy (LINE), forecast 6 cents; huge miss; shares fall almost 5% in pre-market trading; reports a loss of 47 cents; misses by 52 cents;  
  • Noble Energy (NBL), forecast 34 cents; before market opens; beats by 3 cents
  • Denbury (DNR), forecast 23 cents, before market opens; shares fall 4% in futures; rise after earnings release: fourth-quarter 2014 earnings of 27 cents per share, flat year over year. The bottom line, however, came above the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 23 cents. The outperformance was mainly backed by higher production;
  • California Resources Corp (CRC), OXY USA spin-off, forecast 7 cents, after market close;
  • Cheniere Energy (LNG), forecast, a 26-cent loss; after market close;
"Best shale driller"  (EOG) is going to halt growth. -- BloombergBusiness
Why EOG's "crummy corner" is good for oil -- Forbes. By the way, the Forbes writer is using the same phrase I've been using for quite some time: "circling the wagons":
And yet EOG’s results should be received as great news if you’re looking for reasons to be bullish on oil prices. EOG, a shale-drilling pioneer and biggest oil producer in the Lower 48, expects to be producing less oil at the end of the year than it is now.
Why is this a good thing? Because it means that America’s oil and gas drillers are responding quickly to low oil prices by circling the wagons, shutting down drilling rigs, cutting back on fracking and conserving capital.

This is not an investment site. Do not make any investment, financial, or relationship decisions based on what you read here or what you think you may have read here.

The Dickinson Press is reporting:
Hedge fund Paulson & Co. has boosted its stake in Whiting Petroleum Corp. to become the No. 1 shareholder in North Dakota’s largest oil producer, taking advantage of plunging crude prices that have pummeled the company’s stock.

Active rigs:

Active Rigs127186182199171

RBN Energy: held by production.
Can it make sense for a producer to drill a well in today’s low price environment even if the rate of return on that well is below zero?  Surprisingly the answer is yes, and the issue has important implications for the impact lower prices will ultimately have on U.S. oil and gas production volumes.   Factors such as lease requirements can incentivize drilling and cause production levels to continue growing, even when spot prices don’t seem to support it.  As the new economics of lower oil, NGL and natural gas prices suggest that production declines are just down the road,  the market’s quest to nail down when and how much production will decline  has brought the role of “hold by production” (HBP) drilling into the spotlight. Questions about HBP status and its role in producers drilling strategies have been a staple in the latest round of earnings calls.Today we take a closer look at HBP drilling.
One of the he biggest differentiators between the U.S. and other countries when it comes to drilling for oil and gas is that in the U.S. individuals own the rights to produce minerals beneath the land.  That means when producers want to drill for oil or gas, the mineral rights owner (sometimes but frequently not the owner of the surface rights, generally thought of as the landowner) gets to share some of the proceeds. That is good news for the mineral rights owner but it does require the negotiation of a lease agreement with any would-be producer.  A key provision in any such oil and gas lease agreement between mineral right owners and producers is the Habendum clause, which establishes the length of the lease and defines the primary and secondary terms for drilling rights. These primary and secondary terms play a critical role in determining if and when the producer is required to drill for oil or gas.
Many leases in the shale and other high-growth oil and gas basins are structured with a feature designed to protect the mineral rights owner from a producer leasing those rights but then never actually drilling a well (and providing royalties for the mineral rights owner).  In this type of lease, the primary term defines the initial period of the lease, which gives the producer time to determine whether to drill or give up the lease. When the primary term expires, the lease terminates or rolls into the secondary term as long as there is a producing well on the lease. In other words, to keep from losing the lease, (i.e., extend the lease beyond the primary term), a producer needs to drill at least one producing well to “hold” the lease by production - HBP. For a producer, a longer primary term is advantageous because it gives them more time to decide whether and when to drill. For the mineral rights owner a shorter primary term is better because it reduces the time they have to wait for drilling and potential production revenues.