Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Can Saudi Arabia Afford All Those Mega-Billion-Dollar Projects? -- Oilprice.Com -- April 17, 2018

Link here. Data points:
  • Saudi Arabia's sovereign wealth fund
    • plans to expand to $400 billion by 2020 but right now: US$250 billion
  • Saudi Arabia 2018 budget
    • deficit of US$52 billion
    • oil price target: US$80 / bbl
  • available foe mega-projects
    • $2 trillion Saudi Aramco valuation
    • IPO, at 5%: US$100 billion
    • plus the sovereign wealth fund, results in total of US$350 billion
    • that leaves $33 billion short for the mega-projects planned by Prince Salman
  • Financial Times:
    • oil needs to be trading at $120/bbl for Saudi Aramco to be valued at US$2 trillion
    • at a price of US$64/bbl, Aramco would be worth just US$1.1 trillion
  • the six mega-projects
    • Neom city project and the Softbank deal (solar project): US$700 billion
    • another smart city for Egypt: US$7 billion
    • refinery deal with three Indian companies: US$44 billion
    • refinery project in Malaysia: US$7 billion
    • petrochemicals complex in Saudi Arabia; US$5 billion
  • total: US$766 billion

US Crude Oil Inventories Decline Slightly; Essentially Flat -- API -- April 17, 2018; Kraken Operating With Six New Permits In North Dakota

Weekly crude oil inventories, API data:
  • forecast: an increase of 0.625 million bbls of oil
  • actual: a decrease of 1.047 million bbls of oil; oilprice.com said this was in-line with analysts expectation, although API forecast a slight build
  • the EIA data will be released Wednesday morning, 10:30 a.m. EDT
  • oilprice.com headline: "oil prices head higher after API reports crude inventory draw"
  • at close: WTI was up 30 cents for the day; trading at $66.52
  • 30 cents / $66.52 = 0.4%
  • technically, the headline was correct -- "oil prices were higher" -- 0.4%
Active rigs:

Active Rigs59522993186

Seven new permits:
  • Operators: Kraken Operating (6); Hunt Oil
  • Fields: Epping (Williams); Brooklyn (Williams); Ross (Mountrail)
  • Comments: Kraken Operating has permits for a 6-well Kraken pad in NENE 25-155-99
Four permits renewed:
  • Sinclair: four Yauch permits, in McKenzie County

I Thought This Was A Longer, Colder, Snowier Spring Than Usual -- We Need Atmospheric CO2 To Go Higher, Apparently -- At Least According To The Algore Model -- April 17, 2018

Link here to Bloomberg:
Your Spring Break is over.
The calendar says it’s mid-April, but snow and ice may be headed for northern New York and New England later this week, according to Bob Oravec, a senior branch forecaster at the U.S. Weather Prediction Center in College Park, Maryland. Places that had a nice, sunny day this past weekend probably won’t see warm temperatures again for at least several days.
Blame the Arctic. Weather patterns up there haven’t been changing much, and that’s driving colder temperatures across most of North America. The only part of the U.S. that’s bucked that trend this month has been in the Southwest, where parts of California, New Mexico, Arizona and southern Utah have had above-average temperatures, Oravec said.
Blame the Arctic.


Back to the article: "...but snow and ice may be headed for northern New York and New England later this week."

Snow and ice may be headed for New England later this week. The forecasters aren't sure about the weather this weekend (four days from now) but they know to 0.4 degrees what the global temperature will be one hundred years from now.

Wow, this gets tedious.

So Much For New Zealand's Efforts To Save The World -- April 17, 2018 -- This Is A Huge, Huge Story -- Wasn't India A Signatory To The Paris Accords?

How many remember this post of just a few days ago?
Dumb and dumber: New Zealand's strategy to end global warming? Story here:
  • halt immediately any new permits for offshore oil and gas exploration
  • yeah, that will solve the "problem"
  • mostly it will push future investment overseas
  • but, I suppose, the hobbits are happy
If too many words in that story, this screenshot:

So, New Zealand cuts their potential revenue in an effort to minimize a perfectly harmless gas, CO2, at "normal" atmospheric concentrations. In fact, most/all plants require CO2 for energy.

Now, today, from energypost.eu:

Oh, well.

Yes, to answer the question, India was a signatory to the Paris climate accords.

The accord: only words.

Words, Bee Gees

Update On The Brouhaha Between British Columbia And Alberta -- April 17, 2018

There are several stories that fascinate me: ObamaCare (pretty much "New Diet Coke"); Netflix; Apple, Inc; and, now, the brouhaha between Alberta and British Columbia. Is "brouhaha" the best word to use in this context? Whatever.

Apparently the word on the street is that Ms Notley will be defeated in the next election. The next election will take place on or before May 31, 2019.

She has said "the pipeline" will be built. She has threatened British Columbia with economic repercussions if the pipeline is further delayed or "killed."

Apparently things are starting to happen.

Apparently there are already some pipelines that run from Alberta to the west coast of British Columbia. These pipelines carry refined products (such as gasoline and diesel fuel) which customers in British Columbia purchase and consume. The pipelines also carry crude oil that is refined in a Burnaby, British Columbia, refinery. The pipelines also carry crude oil (and refined products?) for export, mostly to Asia.

Apparently, right now, the pipeline moves product based on a free market, capitalistic system.

According to Irina Slav at oilprice.com, a bill to change this "system" has been introduced into the Alberta legislature.

If passed, the bill will give the Alberta provincial government the authority to license fuel traders. The Alberta government will be able to control what products and how much product will go through those pipelines.

  • Alberta supplies 50% of total fuel imported by British Columbia
  • the only refinery in British Columbia is the Burnaby (Vancouver) refinery
  • this refinery produces 25% of BC's fuels
  • without the "right" kind of fuel the refinery cannot operate properly
  • British Columbia has other options: fuel and crude oil from west coast of the United States; problem:
    • more expensive
    • would also likely raise cost/prices of oil and refined products for consumers on the US west coast
It will be interesting to see how this plays out.

But, also think about this: there are likely political folks in the US who are watching this closely. Could the US federal government or could individual states get into the pipeline licensing business (licensing, and thereby controlling pipelines more than they are already controlled?). After all, the federal government, through RINS, has greatly affected production in US refineries.

Regardless, the bill introduced into the Alberta legislature is certainly very interesting.

The Apple Page

From Macrumors:
The iPhone X accounted for 35 percent of total worldwide handset profits in the fourth quarter of 2017.
The device generated 5x more profit than the combined profit of more than 600 Android OEMs during the quarter, despite the fact that it was only available for purchase during the final two months of the year and in spite of reports pointing towards lackluster sales of the device

A Damn Fine Cup Of Coffee -- April 17, 2018

And now I have to post the opening them song:

What fresh hell is this? you and Dorothy Parker (would) probably ask.

The most comforting part of my day is when Scott Adams goes live with his "Periscope." He is "nuts" -- I think. But that's a different story. I doubt even one percent of my readers are as fascinated with Scott Adams as I am. I think he's going to be a big help keeping me calm when things really start going badly for President Trump.

Scott Adams signature opening is his "simultaneous sip" of coffee -- and thus the tie-in with Twin Peaks.

I'm old school. Everyone else has a playlist on their iPhone. Everyone else streams Spotify.


For my short cross-country trip from DFW (north Texas) to Tucson this past weekend, I rented a Toyota Corolla from Enterprise Rent-A-Car. One reason I rent a car when I travel like that: the rental car is completely empty. I have room for everything I want to take. In this case I took two of my four boxes of CDs along with the other stuff that I needed for attending a family wedding. Yes, two small boxes of CDs. And once I started driving, I simply played CD after CD after CD. Listening to "Twin Peaks" at 4:00 a.m. after 20 hours of driving was probably the wrong thing to do -- came awfully close to falling asleep. LOL.

After the theme song, I quickly took it out, and replaced "Twin Peaks" with the "Best of Blondie." Wow, that helped keep me awake.


This is probably a story I should not be telling. Something tells me that once I post this story I will find out how many family members actually read the blog. LOL.

Apparently -- based on television commercials and overheard gossip -- for some women "panty lines" are a major concern.

And, apparently, for some women on the "red carpet," panty lines are a really major concern.

That for background, here's the story.

There are two "Sophies" in our family: a 23-year-old Sofia and bridesmaid; and, our granddaughter, three-year-old Sophia (four years old this summer) and fun-loving spirit.

Our older adult daughter called my wife over the weekend to update her on the wedding, just a social telephone call. During the call it happened to come up (I have no idea why this came up but it must be a "girl thing"). But it doesn't matter.

Our older adult daughter told my wife that Sofia asked if someone would go to the mall and pick up a new "thong" for her -- she needed it for her role on the "red carpet" during the wedding ceremony.

Yes, you know where this is heading.

My wife was absolutely silent for several minutes while listening to this story. She was absolutely flabbergasted that "our" three-year-old Sophia was concerned about panty lines and needed a new "thong." (I was unaware that Sophia was wearing thongs in the first place.)

Then it dawned on my wife. Our daughter was talking about 23-year-old Sofia and not 3-year-old Sophia looking for new underwear.

So, there you have it.

This would be a great "Gracie and Allen" scene -- if they were still around. LOL.

1Q18 Earnings

This is not an investment site. Do not make any investment, financial, job, travel, or relationship decisions based on what you read here or what you think you may have read here. If this is important to you, go to the source. There will be factual and typographical errors on this page. If something looks wrong, it probably is.

Earnings for the current quarter will be reported at this page; the link will be on the sidebar at the right, under "Earnings Central." When we start to see earnings reports for any quarter, the "Earnings Central" link is moved to the top of the sidebar until the earnings season is over.

I don't have time to check/update earnings on all companies that might interest me or readers.

Much of this information is done in haste. I assume there are factual and typographical errors. It is for my personal use only. If this information is important to you, go to the source.

Note: by 4Q16 I lost a lot of interest in tracking earnings. I'm not sure where I will go with this page. In fact, there are more and more days when ... no, I won't go there. 


NOG: beats; shares up almost 11%;

EOG: nice beat.

WLL: holy mackerel -- with EPS of 92 cents by 67 cents

AMZN: incredible.

COP: crushes expectations; huge earnings report; 

SLB: earnings in line. SLB's first-quarter earnings almost doubled; soared 90% to 38 cents/share with revenue up almost 14% to just under $8 billion. North American revenue jumped 52% year-over-year while international revenue dipped slightly (think Russia?).

BHGE: EPS at 17 cents vs 7 cents one year ago; top-line revenue down.

United Airlines: huge beat on top and bottom line; EPS at 50 cents vs 40 cents estimate;

IBM beat on both upper / bottom line; but must not have beat whisper number; shares actually down 4% after hours;

CSX had huge quarter; beat on revenue; EPS; up 30% after hours;

The big story coming out of 1Q18 earnings: Netflix surges; banks doing well; folks seem to be surprised and yet it was predicted by many that the first quarter 2018 was going to be huge. Netflix earnings and revenues crush estimates, but it was the number of new subscribers they reported that was the much bigger story. Posted April 17, 2018.

Goldman Sachs profit soars 26% on trading rebound.

Johnson & Johnson top 1Q views on sales spike, but net dips.

Vermilion Energy to acquire Canadian rival Spartan Energy in C$1.4 billion deal.

Chevron green lights $5.1 billion Gorgon expansion project.

UnitedHealth 1Q earnings beat on higher revenues.

The Market, Energy, And Political Page, Part 3, T+48 -- April 17, 2018 -- Trump Fails To Solve World Hunger; The Bitch Train

One week after President Trump tweets about tariffs, the mainstream media blamed the stock market plunge and predicted the US economy would "go south" because of the impending trade war. All of a sudden, all that is history -- T+48 -- and now with 1Q18 earnings coming and the market surging, the "fair and balanced" Yahoo!Finance is suggesting that Trump is "taking too much credit for the economy." LOL. That's the headline story / the headline banner over at Yahoo!Finance? I can't make this stuff up.

Cognitive dissonance.

Can't have it both ways.

Imagine if Hillary were president.

Making America great again.

Drill, baby, drill.

I wonder if the mainstream media will give President Trump any credit if North Korea agrees to denuclearize. I assume the MSNBC spin will be that President Trump did not go far enough. I can see the headlines now: "Kim Jong Un Demilitarizes; China Lifts All Tariffs On US Goods; Trump Failed To Solve World Hunger."

Batch Train

From the Kinder Morgan Canada website: Products in the Pipeline.
TMPL transports crude oil, refined and semi-refined products together in the same line. This process, known as “batching,” means that a series of products can follow one another through the pipeline in a “batch train.”
A typical batch train in the mainline is made up of a variety of materials being transported for different shippers. Products next to each other in the pipeline can mix. This mixing - or product interface - is kept to a minimum by putting the products in a specific sequence. Any products that do mix are re-refined for use. 
Not to be confused with "bitch train." A good example of a "bitch train" is story-after-story about how awful the United States has become ever since November 9, 2016.

Is This Really On CNN? -- April 17, 2018

Link here: https://www.facebook.com/derekmke/videos/599007993778650/UzpfSTE1MDY3NTI1ODQ6MTAyMTE0ODc2ODAxNzY3NzY/.

Amazing how quickly CNN tried to spin this story. I can't believe CNN posting this. I hope someone captures this video. This video is going to be taken down soon and someone at CNN is going to be fired.

The Market, Energy, And Political Page, Part 2, T+48 -- April 17, 2018

Tesla: two days in a row, the market surges; up 200+ points each day and yet TSLA slumping. Twitter is afire regarding TSLA and Tesla. TSLA is down another 2.7% in early trading. Past five days, down from $305 to $283. Some very, very big analysts now predict a share price of $84 -- it's my understanding that most analysts, when they talk about their price target -- they are talking about a one-year target. A fascinating, fascinating story to watch. Bloomberg headline today: Tesla 3 production skids to a halt. Robots to blame for Tesla 3 production problems. If so, that's not an easy problem to fix.

Bird shit. Anyone following the energy story for the past nine years -- starting with the seven dead ducks in an oil pit in North Dakota and ending with Obama declaring open season on eagles and whooping cranes (wind turbines) -- knows this Washington Post story is "bird shit." And "bat shit" for that matter. I'm not going to post any excerpts: everyone has their own "world myth" regarding "bird kills" and as a story, it's no longer a story. The faux environmentalists showed their true "colors" on this issue when they looked the other way with regard to bird kills and wind power. As President Trump would say, "Sad!"

Disclaimer: yada, yada, yada.

To infinity and beyond: it looks like I missed the bottom. I should have bought shares in GE late yesterday afternoon. GE is surging today -- practically straight up. To infinity and beyond. I assume those folks selling TSLA today are buying GE.

PSX: many, many articles out today regarding PSX. I thought I would see what's going on:


Sophia was looking longingly at the pool. She couldn't wait to get in. That's a "fake face" by the way -- Sophia was having a great time. Her mom was asking her to smile -- and with a four-year-old, you know how that goes.

Coincidence? Methinks Not -- Twitter Never Goes Down! -- April 17, 2018


Later, 11: 13. a.m., CDT: now, the IRS online filing system is down ... (yes, I know, the Russians did not shut this down -- the system is simply overwhelmed --

Later, 9:40 a.m., CDT: twitter back up. LOL.

Original Post 

Phrases we don't like to see in the news: major outages; for users around the world; Putin retaliates; Hillary says she will run again; California on tsunami watch; Trump tweets -- again.



The Market, Energy, And Political Page, Part 1, T+48 -- April 17, 2018

Again, way too much to blog. So quickly, some short notes and will expand on them later.

Ethane: that appears to be the big story in the oil and gas sector right now.

Price of oil: "everyone" got excited about price of oil leading up to the Syrian missile attack, round 2. Incredible restraint on all sides and price of oil actually failed to move all that much.

Trump's lawyer: Hannity snared? Rush slips by. Wow, I'm glad Hillary is not president. Can you imagine all the stories about her financial dealings, going all the way back to cattle futures?

Economy: the economy along I-10 and I-20, west from Dallas/Ft Worth to San Diego/Los Angeles is absolutely "on fire." Figuratively and literally. Literally all long I-10 from Midland to Odessa to Pecos -- flaring.

Pad drilling: speaking of which -- the flares along I-10 in the Permian -- "they" seem to be developing the Permian shale differently than they did the Bakken. I preferred the Bakken. But then again, I'm biased.

Stock market: on fire. Led by Netflix. More on that later. My first post on Netflix was March 21, 2013. Netflix shares were trading for about $25 in early 2013; the stock split 7:1 in July, 2015; and is now trading for about $310. Pre-market trading, NFLX is up $22 or about 7%.

Disclaimer: this is not an investment site. Do not make any investment, financial, job, travel, or relationship decisions based on anything you read here or think you may have read here.

Kennedy clan skiing: snow records topple all across the northern tier; and more to come. And to think the Kennedy clan said we would never see snow again.  My hunch: this is going to be an incredibly hot summer. And the mainstream press -- which has not been reporting much winter weather this year -- will more than make up for that by reporting how hot it is this summer.

Scott Adams: he may just be the most fascinating commentator on social medial right now, but he is getting a few things wrong (not surprising). I don't mind when he gets things wrong; he does see things differently; a bit of fresh air. Having said that, I was greatly disappointed in his reply to someone who asked whether he was a holocaust denier.

Syrian missile attack, round 2: mainstream media is already re-writing history. Watch for more such reporting over the next few days (weeks?). On my virtual 14-inch yellow legal pad, I've mad the proverbial side-by-side lists: all the good things about the missile barrage vs all the bad things about the missile barrage. There are bout 54 things on the former list; I can't think of anything to put on the latter list (negative things coming out of the missile attack.

Phillips 66: did Buffett make yet another investment mistake? PSX is up $13+/share since Phillips 66 bought 35 million shares from Warren. I think he had to sell some shares for regulatory reasons. Can't remember. If so, not an investment mistake -- unless he might have made a bid to simply buy the rest of the company. LOL.

Shell: going green -- no good deed goes unpunished.

Tuesday, April 17, 2018 -- Wow, Talk About Timely -- Today's RBN Energy Post -- NGLs

Active rigs:

Active Rigs60522993186

RBN Energy: today's horrific petchem margins and the implications for NGLs. A reader sent me a note yesterday -- how bad ethane rejection was. Today, RBN energy talks about it. How incredibly timely. I might come back to this later.
Could it get any worse? Possibly, but the last time we saw petchem margins this bad was in the depths of the 2008-09 economic meltdown, and back then the atrocious margin levels resulted in drastic plant curtailments and in some cases permanent shutdowns. But this time around the petchem industry is in the process of bringing on even more capacity! Is the current situation a fluke, or a harbinger of things to come? In today’s blog we examine recent trends in steam cracker margins, by far the largest demand sector for natural gas liquids (NGLs) and consider what these developments may mean for NGL markets in general, and ethane in particular.
Wagging the dog: if folks think the missile launch was Trump wagging the dog, just wait until Mueller gets ready to release his report. LOL.

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Once I get started, this should be a  pretty good day of blogging. I'm back from my short "vacation."

I have to take the Honda Civic in to have the oil changed. It's a 2012 model, bought in late 2011. So, when I drop it off, I will walk down to Starbucks and blog. Hopefully they let me use the restroom if I need to use it. The missing link in those Starbucks stories: I was unaware that one had to ask permission to use restrooms at Starbucks: it turns out that in some areas in the country, they lock the doors to restrooms and that was the case at Starbucks: apparently a "code" is needed to open the doors. It seems customers could easily help each other out in that regard. Whatever. I still think there must have been some "history" to the story that we're not being told. It would be interesting to know what business the businessmen were in.

Anyway, I digress.

More later. Have to take the car in. I'll be back on the net around 8:00 a.m. CDT.