Monday, August 3, 2015

Re-Fracking; Update On BHI-HAL Merger -- August 3, 2015

Note: a huge "thank you" to all readers for not pointing out the number of typographical (spelling) errors in the original post. I post as fast as I can, and will come back when I proofread later. The spelling errors have been corrected in this post. 

Rigzone has an article on re-fracking. The jury is still out. For all the writing, not much was said in the article. Re-fracking might work, it might not work.

Reuters/Rigzone reports update of the BHI-HAL merger. Tea leaves suggest the deal is dead.

Bloomberg/Rigzone reports that the situation in the oil patch, due to slumping oil prices, excess supply, poor demand, could get really, really ugly.  It appears crude oil supply will outpace demand by 1 million bopd through 2016.

This Is Not An Investment Site, But Some Companies Of Interest That Will Be Reporting Tomorrow -- August 3, 2015

Reporting tomorrow:
This list may not be entirely accurate; things change.

Apple Buys Massive 43-Acre Development Site In North San Jose -- August 3, 2015

Link here.
Shortly after leasing a 300,000 square foot campus in North San Jose, Apple has expanded on its real estate holdings in the area, buying a 43-acre development site at 2347 North First Street for more than $138 million.
According to the Silicon Valley Business Journal, the site, which consists of undeveloped land, is approved for up to 2.8 million square feet of office space, much like Apple's Campus 2 location in Cupertino. Apple has not submitted building plans for the site, and it is unclear what the company plans to do with the land.
Apple is expanding rapidly in the Bay Area. In addition to the second Cupertino campus and the 300,000 square feet of space leased in San Jose in July, the company made its first real estate lease in San Francisco last week, signing a deal for 76,000 square feet of office space.
Along with office space, Apple is also said to be seeking additional space for both industrial purposes and research and development, possibly for undisclosed projects like its Apple Car.

Update On Halcon's Work In Marmon Oil Field, The Bakken -- August 3, 2015


August 4, 2015: see comment below suggesting another reason why Halcon is reporting great wells in Marmon oil field:
Another variable at play here is production method.
I've noticed Halcon routinely putting their new wells on ESP (electrical submersible pump) very early (similar to what EOG is doing).
This allows them to move LARGE fluid volumes and "unload" all that water they pumped down during the frac very quickly.
In addition to accelerating production these ESP's are likely the next phase of the Bakken "laboratory" as they provide accurate real time bottom hole flowing pressure, a key variable for any productivity indexing or rate transient analysis. This pressure data point was previously rarely available with any quality to the engineers. Having this on numerous wells should accelerate the learning curve since it will allow for much earlier time diagnostics/benchmarking of fracture stimulation. 
Original Post
Quite awhile ago I noted that some nice wells were being reported in the Marmon oil field. It surprised me; Marmon oil field is not exactly an area I had expected to see the good wells that were being reported. I gave it some passing thought but not much more, until tonight.

A reader wrote to ask if I had any idea why ... here's the question the reader asked:
Do you know what Halcon is doing different on the Nelson Wells in the Marmon Prospect North of Williston?
The wells, 157-100-Sections 25/36 with well numbers 27000. 27001, 27002 are producing 15,000-30,000 barrels a month which isn’t common in the area. 
These three wells are still on confidential status, but production numbers have been published:

27000, conf, HRC, Nelson 157-100-25A-36-2H:

DateOil RunsMCF Sold

27001, conf, HRC, Nelson 157-100-25A-36-3H:

DateOil RunsMCF Sold

27002, conf, HRC, Nelson 157-100-25A-36-4H:

DateOil RunsMCF Sold


Back on June 23, 2015, after a reader inquired about the HRC wells in Marmon oil field, I was reminded how good these wells really were.

I updated the completion techniques: it appears that HRC is routinely using 35 stages, 4.1 million lbs in the Marmon. There is much more to their completion technique but further description is beyond my comfort zone. Maybe other readers have more understanding / knowledge of HRC's completion techniques.

Interestingly enough, someone has already done that. I posted the link back on June 24, 2013. Wow, that feels like ancient history. 2013. Two years ago. How things have changed.

Anyway, that "someone" was no less than Mike Filloon. The good news is that his article on the Halcon wells in Marmon oil field was not archived. I linked it then but you can go to it directly here:

This is what Mike wrote about Halcon's well completion design:
Well design varies from one operator and area to the next. What works in Mountrail County may be ineffective in Divide. These variations take time to hammer out, and most operators have a good idea of how they want to work the formation by the time pad development begins. There are several variables manipulated by operators to maximize production at the lowest cost.
The lateral length is how long the horizontal leg of the well is. Basically, this is the total feet coming in contact with the source rock. The longer the lateral, the better the production (or at least that is how it is suppose to work). The lateral is made of stages.
These stages allow completions work to be done one section at a time. The tighter the stage, the better the pump trucks can stimulate the source rock. Water and proppant are pushed into the fractures, keeping it open so the crude and natural gas can continue to travel into the well. Well design must have balance. Too little water and proppant, and the fractures close off, decreasing well economics. Too much and there is added cost with no benefit of additional revenues. This is why operators use a wide range of design, as it is the only way to optimize well economics.
Halcon has drilled and completed a large number of wells in western Williams County. This is the same general area I recently covered. EOG Resources recently completed a well in this area that had a 6 month pay back. These results are not typical, but could be a sign of things to come.
The table below provides Halcon's well design and production data in several fields of western Williams County. Keep in mind, it is relatively new to the Bakken and still getting comfortable with the play. (Go to the link to see the table/results).
Halcon's goal is to improve on Petro-Hunt's and GeoResources' well design. The above wells use average stage and lateral length. It could feasibly increase water usage by 50% and proppant by 25%. This would depend on how well it is stimulating the source rock, but this design tells me Halcon is still figuring that out. Its IP rates are below average, with EURs of 300,000 bbls ofoil. Comparing to Petro-Hunt, Halcon's well are better.
Petro-Hunt's well design had very poor production. It used more water, but the average stage was longer. It used less proppant. Petro-Hunt's EURs were approximately 200,000 bbls of oil, which is not economic even with better Bakken differentials.
Bottom line:
  • The Marmon oil field is north of Williston; it is generally not considered one of the sweet spots in the Bakken
  • HRC's wells suggest that the right completion technique might take an "average" field and make it a great field
  • at a minimum, HRC's completion technique in the Marmon: 35 stages, and 4.1 million lbs sand
But, my hunch is there is a lot more to the story. I can hardly wait to see the frack reports for the three Nelson wells above.

In the graphic below, note the location of the Marmon oil field, well north and far west of the generally recognized sweet spots in the Bakken (and well south of the one small sweet spot in Divide County being worked by SM Energy). In the graphic below, the Stockyard Creek oil field, east of Williston, is circled; it is in the sweet spot of the Bakken as it trails under the river and into the Watford City area. You can see the relative lack of activity around the Marmon oil field far to the north of the very active Stockyard Creek area.

Six (6) New Permits -- North Dakota, August 3, 2015

Frack data for some HRC wells has been updated: link here

Active rigs:

Active Rigs74194179206182

Wells coming off the confidential list Tuesday:
  • 28525, 1,227, EOG, Parshall 58-1608H, Parshall, ESP July 3, 2015; 43 stages, 9.1 million lbs sand, 7 million gallons xl gel, HCl, fresh water; t2/15; cum 83K 6/15;
  • 28639, 848, EOG, Parshall 92-28H, Parshall, ESP February 21, 2015, 34 stages, 6.7 million lbs sand, 5 million gallons xl gel, HCl, fresh water, t2/15; cum 55K 6/15;
29494, drl, XTO, Rita 44X-34H, Tobacco Garden, no production data,
Six (6) new permits --
  • Operator: XTO
  • Field: Lindahl (Williams)
  • Comments:
Two (2) producing wells completed:
  • 29048, 2,112, BR, Teton 2-1-3MTFH, Camel Butte, 4 sections, t7/15; cum --
  • 29463, 2,645, BR, Teton 7-8-10MBH, Camel Butte, 4 sections, t7/15; cum --
Whiting abandoned three producing wells, including:
  • 23936, AB, Whiting, Faiman 32-14, Golden Valley, a Red River well, s12/12; a grand total of 10 bbls;

28525, see above, EOG, Parshall 58-1608H, Parshall:

DateOil RunsMCF Sold

28639, see above, EOG, Parshall 92-28H, Parshall:

DateOil RunsMCF Sold

Intermittent Energy Company Diversifies Into Natural Gas -- August 3, 2015

It's funny / ironic / coincidental how some things happen to play out on the blog. At the same time I was putting together the post with regard to natural gas pipelines from Texas to Mexico, unbeknownst to me, a reader was sending me a link to an article on another Texas natural gas pipeline story.

Bloomgberg is reporting that NextEra Partners, LP, will "buy seven Texas gas pipelines for $2.1 billion." When the deal was announced, shares in the partnership fell the most they had fallen in over a year.
“They’ll be selling a lot of equity to finance this acquisition,” Kit Konolige, senior utility analyst at Bloomberg Intelligence, who doesn’t own or rate NextEra or its partnership, said Monday in an e-mail. “Current NextEra partnership shareholders may be concerned about their stake being diluted.”
NextEra Energy Partners fell 10 percent to $31.94 at 10:26 a.m. in New York, the most since June, 2014. NextEra rose 3.2 percent to $108.57.
But this is what caught my eye, and I'm sure caught the eye(s) of everyone who read the story:
The purchase marks the first foray into pipelines for NextEra Energy Partners, which was formed in 2014. Before Monday’s transaction, the partnership had focused on buying renewable-energy power assets from its creator.
Back to the lede:
NextEra Energy Partners LP, the wind and solar power generator controlled by NextEra Energy Inc., agreed to buy seven natural gas pipelines in Texas for $2.1 billion, adding sales of the power plant fuel to Mexico.

By buying closely held NET Midstream, NextEra Energy Partners will gain the ability to ship 3 billion cubic feet of Texas shale gas a day, with the potential to expand that by 1 billion cubic feet. NET’s assets include a pipeline in the Eagle Ford formation, the top U.S. gas field by proved reserves.
So, this company, formed in 2014 -- that was, like, last year? The company lasts one year before it  diversifies into fossil fuel. I guess they need natural gas to support their hobby industry if government tax credits don't come through.

Speaks volumes.

Natural Gas From Texas To Mexico "Skyrocketing" -- Forbes -- August 3, 2015


August 4, 2015: Bloomberg/Rigzone has article on same subject

Later, 3:48 p.m. Central Time: intermittent energy company buys seven natural gas pipelines in Texas for $2.1 billion.

Later, 2:23 p.m. Central Time: see first comment. To those pipelines in the original post, add this one:
  • NET Mexico Pipeline, 120 miles; as of December, 2014; 2.1 Bcf/d; from the Agua Dulce Hub, Nueces County, Texas, to a point near Rio Grande City, Texas. 

Original Post
This is another must-read from Forbes magazine, covering: three (3) existing pipelines and six (6) proposed pipelines with combined capacity of 6.5 Bcf/d and representing capital budgets in excess of $7 billion.

Texas has 300,000 miles of pipe; Mexico has about 9,000 miles of pipe.

  • Sierrita, Kinder Morgan, on-line last year, 1.9 Bcf/day, 60 miles from Tucson to Sasabe, AZ,estimates: 4.6 Bcf/d by 2024
  • KM Tejas system, Morgan Border Pipeline, Kinder Morgan, 97 miles, Hidalgo County, TX, to King Ranch, Kleburg County, Texas, 300 million cubic feet/day, bidirectional capability
  • Mier-Monterrey Pipeline, KMI, Starr County, TX, to Monterrey, Mexico, 375 million cubic feet/day
Newly announced:
  • Nueva Era Pipeline, Howard Midstream Energy Partners, 200 miles, Webb County Hub to Escobedo, Nuevo Leon, Mexico, on-line July, 2017; 600 mcf/day
  • South Texas-Tuxpan Pipeline, largest proposed natural gas pipeline project in South Texas; 497 miles under the Gulf of Mexico from South Texas to Tuxpan; 2.6 Bcf/day; start date, June, 2018
  • Hidalgo-Reynosa Pipeline, Houston Pipe Line, Hidalgo County, TX, to Reynosa, Tamaulipas, Mexico, 140 mcf/day
  • Trans Pecos Pipeline, Energy Transfer Partners and others, Pecos, TX, to Presidio; 1.4 bcf/day, but local opposition may impede construction
  • Comanche Trail Pipeline, 192 miles, Waha hub at San Elizario, just south of El Paso; Carlos Slim, Mexico's richest man is part owner; 1.1 Bcf/day
  • Roadrunner Gas Transmission Pipeline, ONEOK, Coyanose, TX, to San Elizario, TX; on-line 1Q16; 170 MMcf/d; second phase will increase that to 570 MMcf/d, to be completed by 1Q17; third and final phase will increase that to 640 MMcf/d, to be completed in 2019
Rocket Man

Rocket Man, Elton John

August 3, 2015 -- Part IV; Saudi Imports; Muscle Cars, Jeeps, SUVs Are Back

Winners. July's auto sales:
Chrysler, Nissan: sales rise more than expected; Chrysler sales increase 6% on strength of Jeep
Ford: best July in nine years;
  • total Ford Motor Company U.S. sales up 5 percent last month – its best July since 2006; retail sales up 5 percent;
  • Ford F-Series has best July retail sales results in nine years, while still delivering record average transaction pricing; 
  • Ford commercial vans post best July sales in 15 years;
  • Ford brand SUV sales up 11 percent last month for best July sales performance in 10 years. sales of new Ford Explorer increase 27 percent, all-new Ford Edge up 17 percent, Ford Escape up 10 percent – an all-time July sales record;
  • Fusion achieves best July ever; 
  • Mustang has best July performance since 2008; and,
  • Lincoln brand delivers best July sales results in a decade, driven by strong demand for its newest SUVs, which post best July sales since 2001

Crude Oil 

Losers. Being reported by Reuters/John Kemp:
The biggest losers from the current price war between OPEC and the shale producers seem set to be producers outside the Middle East and North America caught in the cross-fire.
Expensive production from the North Sea, Canada's oil sands, offshore megaprojects, weaker African and Latin American members of OPEC, and frontier exploration areas around the world are all being squeezed hard by the price slump.
OPEC Imports

I'm not sure when EIA first posted this data, but it's the most recent data available, for the month of May, 2015 (it was probably posted sometime in July).  Saudi oil imports into the US actually increased slightly month-over-month:

  • huge increase in oil imports from Persian Gulf and OPEC between December, 2014, and May, 2015
  • huge increase in oil imports from Saudi Arabia and Venezuela during same period
  • Nigeria takes a big hit; Iraq stable
The plunge in oil prices began in October, 2014, with the announcement of the "oil share war" by Saudi Arabia. A quick glance of the spreadsheet at this site suggests historical imports of crude oil from Saudi Arabia ran about 45 million bbls for the month of May (compared to 38 million bbls in May, 2015). In other words, the comparison between December and May is not a good comparison but it is of some interest I suppose. The better comparisons can be made at the linked spreadsheet. However, comparing the imports by country is very enlightening.

Book Corner

From Adam Kirsch's book review of Major Works On Religion and Politics, by Reinhold Niebuhr, edited by Elisabeth Sifton, in The New York Review of Books. 
This selection of Reinhold Niebuhr’s work, edited by his daughter Elisabeth Sifton, is the 263rd volume in the Library of America; and it is possible that the single sentence that appears on page 705 is known to more people, and has affected them more deeply, than anything else the library has ever published:
God, give us grace to accept with serenity the things that cannot be changed, courage to change the things that should be changed, and the wisdom to distinguish the one from the other.
This is the original version of what has come to be known in many slight variations as the Serenity Prayer, under which name it can be found in millions of American homes in every medium imaginable—posters, refrigerator magnets, placemats, even tattoos (the Internet offers dozens of examples). Much of this popularity is owed to Alcoholics Anonymous, which adopted Niebuhr’s prayer as an official meditation.
Surely most of the people who have turned to the Serenity Prayer in times of trouble know little about the man who wrote it.
Niebuhr’s achievements as an intellectual, his influential contributions to public debate from the post–World War I years through the cold war and the civil rights movement, his reputation as a liberal thinker and activist, even his status as President Obama’s favorite theologian—these do nothing to cement the authority of the prayer, which stands on its own as a piece of seemingly timeless wisdom. Yet it is possible to read the whole of Niebuhr’s thought through the lens of the Serenity Prayer, which is a more complicated and challenging text than it may first appear.

Monday, August 3, 2015 -- Part III; Ledecky Wins Swimming Heats By 27 Seconds

Tweeting now:  Med/NWE diesel cargo premium hits $10.25/metric ton, an 8-mth high, on well-supplied NWE market, supportive Med demand. [Mediterranean/Northwest Europe diesel]

Original Post
Breaking news, reported by WSJ less than an hour ago: Katie Ledecky breaks another swimming record. 18-year-old American swimmer breaks her own record in World Championships qualifying heat in Kazan:
KAZAN, Russia—It turns out Katie Ledecky was just getting warmed up.
Roughly 18 hours after winning the gold medal and the 400-meter freestyle Sunday night, Ledecky, broke her own world record in the 1,500-meter freestyle in a qualifying heat of the World Championships.
Ledecky, the 18-year-old sensation who just graduated from high school in Bethesda, Maryland, blew away the field Monday, winning the heats by nearly 27 seconds.
Ledecky, who rarely celebrates her victories, even cracked a smile, and briefly waved her index finger when she saw her time flash on the scoreboard, something she didn’t do Sunday evening when she won her first gold medal of the meet and looked almost disappointed that she had won the race without breaking her world record.
She had no reason for disappointment Monday morning, during a heat when she said she wasn’t even trying to set a new mark. “I wasn’t kicking much,” Ledecky said shortly after the race. “I’m in quite a bit of shock right now.”
On the surface, Ledecky appears to have a bizarrely businesslike approach to her craft. She speaks mostly in unemotional tones and approaches her training and races with the measured style that is extremely rare in someone so young. She is the polar opposite of Missy Franklin, the 20-year-old champion who won four gold medals in London and is all-exuberance, all the time.
North Dakota coolness.

Monday, August 3, 2015 -- Part II

Sempra Energy to buy Pemex's stake in natural gas pipeline JV for $1.33 billion.
  • Sempra Energy's Mexican subsidiary said late Friday it will take full control of a Mexican natural gas pipeline business in a deal valued at $1.33B.
  • SRE's IEnova unit owned 50% of the Gasoductos de Chihuahua joint venture, and Mexico's state oil company Pemex owned the other half, and now expects to buy Pemex's stake within the next 120 days, pending approval from Mexican regulators.
  • Gasoductos de Chihuahua owns three natural gas pipelines, an ethane pipeline, a liquid natural gas pipeline and a liquid natural gas storage terminal.
  • SRE said the purchase will add ~$0.05/share to its annual profit in 2016, and ~$0.10/share by 2019.
MDU, OTTR, QEP will report earnings after close of market today.

Noble Energy beats by $0.18, misses on revs; co raises 2015 sales volumes guidance: Reports Q2 (Jun) earnings of $0.26 per share, $0.18 better than the Capital IQ Consensus Estimate of $0.08; revenues fell 47.2% year/year to $730 mln vs the $952.75 mln consensus.
  • Total organic capital spend in 2015 remains unchanged at $2.9 bln for legacy Noble Energy assets plus $165 mln incremental capex allocated to the Eagle Ford/Delaware assets (post the closing of the transaction).
  • Full year 2015 Noble Energy sales volumes, prior to the inclusion of Rosetta assets, have been increased to between 305-320 MBoe/d, reflecting strong confidence in underlying performance and development execution for the second half of the year, up from 300-315 MBoe/d.
  • Third quarter sales volumes are anticipated to be 345 to 365 MBoe/d, which includes the Eagle Ford and Delaware assets for the period of July 20, 2015 to September 30, 2015.
  • Fourth quarter 2015 sales volumes are expected to increase to a range of 375 to 400 MBoe/d.
At the Chado Tea Room @ Japanese Museum
Los Angeles, CA

Arianna, 12-y/o
a connoisseur of tea
Olivia, 9 y/o
first time

Monday -- August 3, 2015

Tweeting now:

Tweeting now: Iraq's July crude oil exports slip 2.6% on month to 96.245 mil barrels or 3.105 mil b/d, oil ministry data shows

Swimming: Great way to start off the week: Katie Ledecky makes front page of WSJ:
Nothing—with the exception perhaps of 18-year-old sensation Katie Ledecky, who won her fifth world-championship gold medal Sunday—can be counted as automatic anymore.
In the 18-year-old Ledecky and 20-year-old Missy Franklin, who helped the U.S. to a bronze in the women’s 4x100 free relay Sunday, the U.S. has two swimmers capable of doing what Phelps has done for the U.S. men the past dozen years: Collect medals in bulk for a long time. Ledecky, who just graduated from high school in Bethesda, Md., already owns an 800 freestyle Olympic gold, as well as the 400, 800 and 1500 freestyle records.
On Sunday in the 400 freestyle, Ledecky was two bodies ahead after 150 meters, won by nearly four seconds, then spit out a gulp of water upon seeing she had missed breaking another record by three-quarters of a second. “I want to be awfully darn close every time,” she said.

Texas football: first day high school football practice allowed to start practicing -- allowed as of 12:00 midnight and at least one high school had a midnight football and band practice. Full-pad practice cannot begin until Friday this week.

Active rigs:

Active Rigs74194179206182

RBN Energy: huge story -- REX fully open.  (Archived)
Tallgrass Energy’s Rockies Express Pipeline (REX) opened the floodgates for Marcellus/Utica producers this Saturday, August 1, bringing online its Zone 3 East-to-West (E2W) expansion capacity. The expansion tripled westbound design capacity to a full 1.8 Bcf/d from the Marcellus/Utica producing region to delivery points in Ohio, Indiana and Illinois. Potentially this additional takeaway capacity eases supply congestion in the Northeast and will support beleaguered Marcellus/Utica pricing points. As REX touches nearly every part of the US gas market, the expansion can ultimately be expected to reconfigure gas flows and price relationships across multiple regions as it comes online. Today we review the changes and how quickly they are likely to impact the market.