Keppel Explores Sale of Jack-up Rigs to Borr Drilling
Singapore yard Keppel Corporation is considering a sale of jack-up rigs to Norwegian offshore drilling contractor Borr Drilling, reports The Business Times. The world’s biggest builder of oil rigs is seeking to offload six jack-up rigs for up to US$960 million to the Oslo-listed drilling firm headed by Tor Olav Trøim, said the report. BT also reported that Keppel Capital has already hooked up with structured finance provider Clifford Capital to potentially extend a sale-and-lease-back arrangement for at least one jack-up contracted by Grupo R.
Hapag-Lloyd: Shipping Demand Up, More Mergers in 2018
German shipping group Hapag-Lloyd sees demand for transport growing 4 percent in 2018 and expects more shipping firms to merge in the year, the chief executive said. CEO Chief Executive Rolf Habben Jansen also said Hapag-Lloyd, which merged with its Arab peer UASC, could achieve 85 to 90 percent of targeted annual savings from the deal of $435 million this year and 100 percent from 2019. More savings could be made in future, he told reporters in Hamburg, where he reiterated guidance for rising full-year 2017 earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) and for EBIT.
BP Deepwater Horizon Costs Balloon to $65 Billion
BP said on Tuesday it would take a new charge over the 2010 Deepwater Horizon spill after again raising estimates for outstanding claims, lifting total costs to around $65 billion. The post-tax, non-operating $1.7-billion charge BP will take in its fourth quarter results came after claims resolved in recent months were about seven times higher than anticipated, the London-based company said. The claims were part of the Court Supervised Settlement Program that was set up in the wake of the disaster and included nearly 400,000 cases, BP said.
OPEC Leader Calls For Price Stability
Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, who has emerged as a leading OPEC oil price hawk, said he did not want world oil prices to fall from last year's level, when they averaged their highest in 17 years. Despite complaints from the United States and Europe that high oil prices were damaging economic growth, the South American leader said current prices, about $2.50 per barrel below last year's average, were not high enough. "It is vital for us that the average oil barrel price is maintained around where it was last year, at $26.28 per barrel (for Venezuela's basket)," Chavez told a gathering of public sector workers. "This year the price has been below last year…
As US Opens Up Offshore Waters, Eastern GoM Beckons
President Donald Trump's administration has proposed opening up nearly all of America's offshore waters to oil and gas drilling, but the industry says it is mainly interested in one part of it, now cordoned off by the Pentagon: the eastern Gulf of Mexico. The industry's focus on an area located near a sprawling network of existing platforms, pipes and ports could ease the path to new reserves, and assuage the drilling opponents near other places offered under the Interior Department's proposed drilling plan issued last week, like California's Pacific, the Atlantic and Arctic.
Shipbuilders See More Growth with Oil Price Rise
The Korea Times reported that shipbuilders who were enjoying solid sales have also secured an additional growth engine for further expansion rising oil prices. With oil prices hitting record highs, offshore oil exploration has picked up, leading to strong demand for drilling rigs and for the conversion of oil tankers into floating-production, storage and offloading (FPSO) vessels. The unit price of Dubai crude oil, South Korea’s benchmark, rose to a record high of $71.13 in August, an increase of $1.64 from a month earlier, according to data from the National Statistical Office (NSO). The statistics agency added that it is the first time for oil import prices to exceed $70 a barrel. Industry sources said oil prices have quadrupled since 2002.
Indonesia, CNOOC Talks End in Deadlock
Early renegotiation of gas selling price with China National Offshore Oil Company (CNOOC) has ended in deadlock as the ceiling price proposed by CNOOC was seen as too low, according to Asian Pulse. Indonesia has signed a long term contract to supply China's Fujian province with 2.6 million tons of liquefied natural gas (LNG) annually from Tangguh, Papua. Under the agreement in 1992 the LNG price was tide with crude oil price or around $2.4 per MMBTU based on a ceiling price of $25 per barrel of crude oil. The ceiling price is no longer acceptable to Indonesia with the soaring crude oil price at present. Currently the LNG price is around $8 per MMBTU based on a crude oil price of $65 per barrel.
Oil Finishes Strong in 2017
U.S. oil prices rose above $60 a barrel on the final trading day of the year and hit their highest since mid-2015, as an unexpected fall in American output and a decline in commercial crude inventories stoked buying in generally thin trading. International benchmark Brent crude futures also rose, supported by ongoing supply cuts by top producers OPEC and Russia as well as strong demand from China. Oil prices are set to close out the year with strong gains. Brent is up 17 percent since the beginning of the year and U.S. West Texas Intermediate is up 12 percent.
Low Bunker Prices to Support Tanker Earnings
Lower oil prices performed wonders for the tanker market in 2015, says Drewry Maritime Research. Tonnage demand surged and oil trade expanded because of high consumption demand and increased stocking activity. Tonnage supply was also kept in check as the contango in oil prices engaged many large tankers as floating storage because onshore storage tanks were full. The most important positive effect of lower oil prices came in the form of reduced bunker costs for vessel owners.
Market Report Shows Oil Prices Bullish
Burgeoning momentum to own oil seems poised to push oil prices higher for now. On the week, U.S commercial stocks built led by crude, while Japanese crude stocks drew strongly, according to a market report by NYC-based PIRA Energy Group. It is hard not to be bullish oil prices with the global economy gradually improving, tight physical oil markets and MENA turmoil, which is already substantially reducing global oil supplies and has the potential to reduce supplies further. Current positioning and likely September deflationary type headlines, due in part to a challenging calendar, but also the startup of Iranian nuclear negotiations, pose downside risks to oil prices.
NAT CEO: Low Oil Prices Benefit the Tanker Market
Nordic American Tankers Limited Chairman & CEO Herbjørn Hansson addressed the impacts of low oil prices on the tanker business in a letter to shareholders, citing the decrease in oil price as an overall positive for the world tanker market and possible trigger for the recent rate upswing for Suexmax tankers. “The upswing in Suezmax tanker rates in the recent past may have to some extent to do with the decrease in the oil price,” Hansson said. Hansson went on to say that low prices…
Oil Price Crash Claims First US LNG Project Casualty
Excelerate Energy's Texan liquefied natural gas terminal plan has become the first victim of an oil price slump threatening the economics of U.S. LNG export projects. A halving in the oil price since June has upended assumptions by developers that cheap U.S. LNG would muscle into high-value Asian energy markets, which relied on oil prices staying high to make the U.S. supply affordable. The floating 8 million tonne per annum (mtpa) export plant moored at Lavaca Bay, Texas advanced by Houston-based Excelerate has been put on hold, according to regulatory filings obtained by Reuters. The project was initially due to begin exports in 2018. Excelerate's move bodes ill for thirteen other U.S.
Is Oil Price Pain, Shipping Industry's Gain?
Tumbling prices and oversupply may be cause for concern in the oil industry, but shipping industry it can represent a window of opportunity. A simple statistical data can put things in perspective for you: Two out of every three barrels of oil that are transported are moved around in ships. The remaining one-third is transported via pipelines. Therefore, the shipping industry plays a crucial role in the integrated oil business. To start with, the cost of shipping could go down thanks to the current slide - this is what a study by Middle East's The National shows. Malaysia's MIDF Equities Research shipping sector is set to benefit from the current low crude oil prices. It doesn't have a direct instant impact on shipping, but the situation augers well for maritime sector.
CGG to cut Vessel Fleet Further
French seismic group CGG said on Thursday it would further cut its fleet of seismic vessels after declining demand from oil and gas clients hit by the falling oil price led it to record an impairment and one-time charges of $643 million in the fourth quarter. Like peers across the oil services industry, CGG has been badly hit by cutbacks in the sector in 2014 as major producers slashed exploration to counter oil prices that have more than halved since June. "Taking into account the reduced client activity due to the very strong fall in oil prices at year-end and in line with our portfolio rebalancing strategy, we have decided to further reduce our fleet to 11 vessels in 2015," Chief Executive Jean-Georges Malcor said in a statement.
Oil Price Bottoming Depends on Global Growth - IEA chief
International Energy Agency (IEA) chief Fatih Birol said on Sunday that oil prices may have bottomed but that would depend on global economic growth. Asked if oil prices had reached a bottom, Birol told Reuters: "It may well be the case, but it depends on economic growth." He expected global oil demand to grow by 1.2 million barrels per day this year while non-OPEC oil production would fall by more than 700,000 bpd. (Reporting by Osamu Tsukimori; Editing by Jacqueline Wong)
Oil Prices To Remain At Current Levels: Bankers
Central bankers meeting at the Bank for International Settlements reportedly expect world oil prices to remain around current levels, starting that higher prices are not in producers' interests. Oil prices, which had doubled since producers inside and outside the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries agreed in March to cut two million barrels from daily output, came under selling pressure in recent weeks on perceptions that some producers were easing restraints. Benchmark Brent futures hit their highest level in three years in September, at $24.30. Brent for December delivery was trading around $22.73 on Monday.
BHP: GoM Mad Dog Project Viable with sub-$50 Oil
BHP Billiton said the second phase of its Mad Dog offshore joint venture with BP in the Gulf of Mexico was economical at oil prices below $50 per barrel. Originally slated for development in 2013, the project has been deferred due to low oil prices and moves to reduce construction costs. After losing three-quarters of its value from mid-2014 to early 2016, the price of benchmark U.S. crude has rallied more than 80 percent since February to nearly $50 per barrel. Reporting by James Regan
US Oil Output May Stall in Late 2015 -IHS
U.S. oil production may stop growing in the second half of this year and could fall in 2016 as low oil prices make the majority of oil wells uneconomic, according to a report released on Tuesday by IHS Inc energy analysts. Global oversupply of oil has knocked 60 percent off prices since June last year, forcing a slowdown in drilling and putting the brakes on a five-year boom that pushed U.S. production to record highs. Production will likely grow in the next few months as oil producers honor contractual obligations and finish work on a backlog of wells that have already been drilled. But growth will halt in the second half of the year if oil prices remain below $60 a barrel, according to the IHS report based on a study of 39,000 oil wells. U.S.
Oil Prices a Nine-Year High As Iraq Suspends Exports
Oil prices rocketed to a new nine-year high on Nov. 22 after Iraq suspended oil exports under its humanitarian exchange program with the United Nations. London January Brent futures opened at $25.90, the highest oil price since January 1991, when allied forces were preparing to eject Iraqi troops from Kuwait. Later in the day Brent stood at $25.67 a barrel, 63 cents up from Friday's close. Prices leapt as Iraq's Oil Minister Amir Mohammed Rasheed confirmed that Iraq had stopped oil deliveries under the latest six-month phase of its oil-for-food exchange with the UN. Baghdad protested the UN's proposal to extend by two weeks the sixth phase of the program and accused the United States of trying to push other Security Council members into accept a draft resolution on weapons inspections.
Denmark's Budget Gap May Flirt with EU Limit if Oil Stays at $50
Denmark's government estimates its budget would lose 7.5 billion Danish crowns ($1.1 billion) if oil prices remained around $50 a barrel, according to a document submitted by the finance minister to a parliamentary committee. That figure, which takes into account the positive financial impact from lower oil prices, represents 0.4 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) and would push the budget deficit to 2.9 percent, close to the European Union's 3.0 percent cap. In the document, the ministry outlines oil price scenarios. Crude at $60 for the whole year would bring losses of 5.7 billion crowns and at $70, 3.7 billion crowns. Denmark produces oil and gas from the North Sea but its 245,000-barrel per day (bpd) production is dwarfed by Norway's 1.5 million bpd.
Weak Oil Threatens US Export of LNG
Plunging global oil prices may turn hopes for cheap liquefied natural gas supplies from the United States into a costly disappointment for Asian buyers who have already invested billions of dollars in long-term contracts. The 26 percent price slide since June to $85 a barrel exposes cracks in the assumption by utilities and industrial companies from Japan to India that cheap U.S. LNG would muscle into high-value Asian energy markets from 2016. Oil prices form the backbone of LNG trade to Asia, because exporters outside the United States typically tie 25-year supply deals to crude oil prices. If prices continue to fall, these suppliers from Qatar to Australia will regain their edge over upstart U.S. producers. "From the buyer's view, $80 oil makes oil-linked supplies less expensive ...
Oil Prices Rally On Tight Supplies
Crude oil prices bolted higher Monday as traders returned from a long holiday weekend to indications that exporting countries may extend the supply cuts that have helped double petroleum prices this year. Crude oil for delivery in February closed 46 cents higher at $26.33 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, but still failed to lift shares of companies such as Exxon Mobil Corp. and Chevron Corp. in stock market trading.
Offshore Recovery Stalled For Now
As crude oil prices reach Gulf War highs and recent memories of historic low crude prices fade, capital spending on finding and developing new oil reserves continue to play catch up. "The recent oil-price crisis set back non-OPEC output growth for at least a year," a recent report released by Deutsche Banc Alex. Analysts say there is a lag time for exploration spending to play catch up with oil prices - for every one month when crude prices are below the cost of production, it takes three months of high prices to regain the volume of production lost during the low cost period. Crude prices began to rebound from lows near $10 a barrel when OPEC and other major producers cut crude production to raise prices in March 1999.