Saturday, February 17, 2018

Price Rally Spells Fleeting Relief for Canadian Producers

Canadian heavy crude rallied to a two-month high relative to U.S. crude this week, offering some relief to oil producers in Alberta struggling with thin margins amid plentiful supply. The rally was likely to be short-lived, traders and analysts said, because output continues to grow without a corresponding increase in transportation capacity. Canada's crude typically trades at a discount to U.S.

U.S. Drillers Add Rigs for Fourth Consecutive Week

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) Edelweiss)

U.S. energy companies added oil rigs for a fourth week in a row even though crude pulled back from three-year highs over the past couple of weeks as more drillers boost their 2018 spending plans. Drillers added seven oil rigs in the week to Feb. 16, bringing the total count up to 798, the highest level since April 2015, General Electric Co's Baker Hughes energy services firm said in its closely followed report on Friday.

BP Plans No Azeri Platform Shutdowns in 2018

Photo: BP

British oil major BP, which operates a number of oil and gas fields in Azerbaijan, plans no maintenance shutdowns of platforms there this year and intends to advance with new projects, BP's regional president told Reuters. "There aren't any turnarounds planned for this year. I think there are some planned for 2019," Gary Jones, BP's head for Azerbaijan, Georgia and Turkey, said. He said the company would use different ways to conduct inspections…

Cheniere's LA Sabine Pass LNG Output Dips

File Image: Cheniere's Sabine Pass LNG Export facility (CREDIT: Cheniere)

The volume of gas flowing into the facility dropped from about 3.2 billion cubic feet per day on Wednesday to 2.8 bcfd on Thursday and a projected 1.5 bcfd on Friday, Reuters data showed. One bcfd is enough gas to fuel about five million U.S. homes. The plant had been operating near full capacity with about 3.2 bcfd of gas flowing in since mid-January when freezing water during a brutal cold snap forced the company to briefly reduce operations.

U.S. Bill Expands Carbon Tax Credit

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) SunnyS)

A little-noticed addition to the U.S. budget deal approved last week will help Occidental Petroleum Corp and other oil producers by more than tripling a tax credit for injecting carbon dioxide back into the earth to increase crude output. The tax-credit expansion, although supported by environmentalists and energy producers, had failed to move out of Congress during the 2016 presidential election. Its passage now likely will further boost already surging U.S.

Venezuela's President: Oil Output up 200,000 bpd

Venezuela's president, Nicolas Maduro, said on Thursday the country's oil output was up 200,000 barrels per day at the beginning of 2018. Venezuela is undergoing an economic crisis, with quadruple-digit inflation and widespread shortages of food and medicine. Crude production is at its lowest levels in many years. The OPEC nation is also behind on more than $1.6 billion in payments across sovereign debt and that of state oil company PDVSA…

Gazprom Demands Discounts from Russian Pipemakers

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Gas giant Gazprom is demanding big discounts from Russian pipeline suppliers for its major projects, industry sources told Reuters, following the emergence of a producer charging significantly lower prices. In a move likely to shake up the pipe and metals sectors, the Kremlin-controlled Gazprom is seeking the discounts - put by the sources at 20 percent - as it tries to limit investment spending that is due to peak in the next two years.

Oil Slips Below $64

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Oil slipped below $64 a barrel on Thursday as record U.S. production and rising inventories outweighed a weak dollar and Saudi Arabia's comments that OPEC and other producers were committed to their pact on cutting supplies. U.S. crude output hit a record 10.27 million barrels per day, the Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday, making it a bigger producer than Saudi Arabia. U.S. crude and gasoline inventories rose last week, U.S. data showed.

Cove Point LNG Terminal's First Export Imminent

File photo: Methane Spirit loads from the Australia Pacific LNG Gladstone terminal (Photo: Teekay)

Methane Spirit, a liquefied natural gas tanker, said on Thursday it would arrive at Dominion Energy Inc's Cove Point LNG export facility in Maryland around March 31, according to Reuters shipping data. If correct, that could be the first vessel to pick up a cargo from the LNG facility, which Virginia-based Dominion said it expects to enter service in March. Dominion said it planned to spend $4 billion to add export facilities at Cove Point…

China's Crude Futures Face Challenges: Russell

China's new crude futures contract faces a mountain of obstacles to overcome if it is to establish itself as a viable benchmark for trading with the world's largest oil importer. The Shanghai International Energy Exchange (INE), which is part of the Shanghai Futures Exchange, said on Feb. 9 it would launch the much-delayed contract on March 26. In theory, this will give China a powerful…

U.S. Output, Inventories Push Oil Lower

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / Leeylutung)

At the same time, the Dollar hits 15-month low vs. yen, supporting commodities. Oil slipped towards $64 barrel on Thursday as record U.S. production and rising inventories outweighed a weak dollar and Saudi Arabia's comments that OPEC and other producers were committed to their pact on cutting supplies. U.S. crude output hit a record 10.27 million barrels per day, the Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday, making it a bigger producer than Saudi Arabia. U.S.

U.S. Crude Stocks Rise Despite Cushing Drawdown

File Image: AdobeStock_CREDIT Maksym Yemelyanov

U.S. crude stocks rose less than expected last week, but the storage hub of Cushing, Oklahoma, saw yet another drawdown that has halved stocks in the last three months, a trend that may continue until more refiners shut for maintenance. Crude inventories rose by 1.8 million barrels in the week to Feb. 9, short of analysts' expectations for an increase of 2.8 million barrels, the Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday.

Oil Rebounds on U.S. Inventory Figures, Saudi Comments

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U.S. crude inventories rise less than expected - EIA. Oil prices rose on Wednesday, rebounding from earlier losses after U.S. crude stocks rose less than expected and Saudi Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih said major oil producers would prefer tighter markets than to end supply cuts too early. U.S. crude inventories rose 1.8 million barrels last week, Energy Information Administration (EIA) data showed compared with expectations for an increase of 2.8 million barrels.

Dutch Plan to Build Giant Offshore Solar Power Farm

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An offshore seaweed farm in the North Sea will be turned into a large solar power farm that aims to pipe energy to the Dutch mainland in roughly three years. The project comes at a critical time for the Netherlands, which is struggling to curb fossil fuel use and meet greenhouse gas emission targets after years of underinvestment in renewable energy sources. After an initial pilot next year…

OPEC Pact Likely to Evolve Rather Than Terminate

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"The lexicon of exit is not found in our vocabulary", OPEC Secretary-General Mohammad Barkindo told reporters on the sidelines of a conference in Cairo on Monday. Ministers from the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries have been anxious to counter speculation about an early end to production curbs. Barkindo was reinforcing the message that the current curbs will be maintained…

Germany's EWE Presents Plan for Cut in Dutch Gas Use

German energy company EWE has presented a plan to reduce its use of gas from the Dutch field at Groningen by 1.7 billion cubic metres (bcm) annually, the Netherlands' Economic Affairs Ministry said on Wednesday. EWE's plan involves converting higher calorific gas from Russia or Norway to the low-calorie gas its infrastructure is built for. The Dutch government is trying to cut production at Groningen to reduce the small but damaging earthquakes it causes.

Review Ordered of Groningen Production After Small Earthquakes

Dutch gas sector regulator SodM on Wednesday ordered a new review of production at the Groningen field in the north of the Netherlands after a string of small earthquakes this month. Gas company NAM was given a week to produce a report and proposed measures to reduce seismic risks after three tremors with magnitudes of 1.7 to 2.2 between Feb. 8 and Feb. 11. After a 3.4 earthquake in…

Sparrows Wins BP Contract in Angola

Photo: Sparrows

BP has awarded Sparrows Group a three-year contract to manage crane operations and maintenance, and deck services off the coast of Angola. The contract covers four cranes utilized on two Floating Production Offloading and Storage (FPSO) vessels, the Greater Plutonio and the PSVM, located in Blocks 18 and 31 respectively, which are situated 160km north-west of Angola’s capital Luanda.

Inflation Buiilds, Oil Slides

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Oil fell for a third day on Wednesday, dropping nearly 1 percent on concerns about rising U.S. production and another drop in financial markets after U.S. consumer prices rose more than expected. Brent crude futures fell 55 cents to $62.17 a barrel by 1350 GMT. The price has lost 11 percent since hitting a high above $71 in January and has now wiped out all its 2018 gains. U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude futures dropped 77 cents to $58.42 a barrel. U.S.

Asia's Soaring Gas Demand Beckons New LNG Projects

File Image: A typical LNG Carrier (CREDIT: GAC)

Global LNG imports rose by 20 percent in 2017; new demand emerges across South, Southeast Asia. Soaring gas demand from China, India and Southeast Asia is sucking up an LNG supply glut previously expected to last for years, opening opportunity for new production from East Africa to North America that had been deemed part of the overhang. Trade flows in Eikon show global liquefied natural gas (LNG) imports have risen 40 percent since 2015…

Rising U.S. Supply Knocks Oil Prices Again

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) Kasto)

Physical crude price falls as exporters chase customers; U.S. crude inventories rise. Oil fell for a third day on Wednesday, under pressure from concern about rising U.S. production and how much it would hurt efforts by OPEC and its partners to control global supplies. Brent crude futures fell 26 cents to $62.46 a barrel by 1028 GMT. The price has lost 11 percent since hitting a high above $71 in January. It has now wiped out all the 2018 gains. U.S.

Saudi Arabia to Restrain March Oil Exports

Saudi says to keep exports below 7 million bpd in March; OPEC's Barkindo says 2018 oil demand growth to be healthy. Saudi Arabia will restrain its oil exports in March despite lower domestic need for crude as OPEC's leader is pushing to eliminate fully the global oil glut and combat worries about a new cycle of oil price weakness. The kingdom will keep its crude exports below 7 million barrels per day (bpd) in March…

Oil Falls as Outlook for Global Balance Dims

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) Kasto)

API to report storage estimates on Tuesday, EIA on Wednesday. Oil fell on Tuesday, losing gains made earlier in line with a recovery on global stock markets, after a forecasting agency estimated world crude supply could overtake demand this year, potentially undermining producer efforts to curb supply. The Paris-based International Energy Agency raised its forecast for oil demand growth in 2018 to 1.4 million barrels per day, from a previous projection of 1.3 million bpd.

Oil Prices Pare as Global Outlook Darkens

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / Leeylutung)

API to report storage estimates on Tuesday, EIA on Wednesday. Oil stabilised on Tuesday, paring gains made earlier in line with a recovery on global stock markets, after a forecasting agency estimated world crude supply could overtake demand this year, potentially undermining producer efforts to curb supply. The Paris-based International Energy Agency raised its forecast for oil demand growth in 2018 to 1.4 million barrels per day…

Trump Proposes $200 Mln Budget for BSEE

(File photo: BSEE)

President Donald Trump today proposed a $199.9 million Fiscal Year (FY) 2019 budget for the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) as the Administration aims to support a ramp up in domestic oil and gas production. The FY 2019 budget request includes an estimate of $67.9 million in offsetting collections. Offsetting collections includes $20.3 million for rental receipts, $3.8 million for cost recoveries and $43.8 million for inspection fees.

Dana Gas swings to net profit in 2017

File photo: Dana Gas

United Arab Emirates energy producer Dana Gas swung to a net profit of $83 million in 2017 from a net loss of $88 million a year earlier after a $1 billion payment as part of a settlement with the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG). The company's revenues were also boosted by higher oil prices and higher production in Egypt and Kurdistan, where the Abu Dhabi-listed producer has its main assets.

Big Oil Takes Stage for Post-austerity Beauty Contest

(File photo: Shell)

With years of austerity in their rear-view mirrors, the world's biggest oil companies are locked in a beauty contest to lure investors with promises of growth and greater rewards. Royal Dutch Shell and Total are emerging as frontrunners after a three-year slump thanks to strong growth projections but Exxon Mobil, the biggest publicly traded oil company, has largely disappointed with a weaker outlook.

Sonatrach Eyes More Vessels to Boost Asia Gas Sales

(Photo: Sonatrach)

Algeria will acquire more vessels to transport gas to Asia as it eyes increased sales in that region, the chief executive of state energy firm Sonatrach said on Monday. "With Russia and the U.S., gas competition is tough," Abdelmoumen Ould Kaddour told reporters during a visit to the Hassi Messaoud oilfield. He gave no details. Kaddour also said Sonatrach's oil drilling in Algeria's southern neighbour Niger…

BP, Kosmos Move Closer to Senegal and Mauritania Offshore Project

BP and Kosmos Energy have moved closer to approving development of the Tortue natural gas field offshore Mauritania and Senegal after the two West African countries agreed to split production from the cross-border field. Kosmos said on Monday it expected to make a final investment decision (FID) on the project in 2018, with first gas expected in 2021. BP had previously indicated it expected to reach an FID on the project towards the end of this year.

Eni Ramping up Production at Zohr Field

Production from Egypt's huge Zohr offshore gas field in the Mediterranean will reach 2.9 billion cubic feet per day by mid-2019, Italy's Eni said on Monday. Speaking at an industry event in Cairo, CEO Claudio Descalzi said the goal was to reach output of 1.8 bcf to 2 bcf per day by the end of 2018 and then ramp up to 2.9 bcf per day by mid-2019. Discovered in 2015 by Eni, the field contains an estimated 30 trillion cubic feet of gas.

Enpro Subsea Wins Frame Agreement with Tullow

Photo: Enpro Subsea

Production optimization specialist company Enpro Subsea has been awarded a frame agreement contract to support leading multinational exploration and production (E&P) company Tullow Oil as part of the operator’s strategic activities in Ghana. The contract will see the Aberdeen-headquartered firm delivering its innovative subsea intervention technologies to support Tullow’s plans with new and existing wells in the Jubilee & TEN fields.

Oil Slides toward Weekly Loss on Excess Supply Worries

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Oil prices fell for a sixth day on Friday, and were on track for their biggest weekly loss in 10 months, as record-high U.S. crude output added to concerns about a sharp rise in global supplies. The drop came amid a rout in global equity markets sparked by inflation fears. Brent futures were down 81 cents at $64 a barrel by 1502 GMT. Earlier in the day, they fell as far as $63.70, the lowest since Dec. 20. U.S.

Lebanon Will Use Energy Block Disputed by Israel

Lebanese Energy Minister Cesar Abi Khalil vowed on Friday there would be full exploration in offshore energy Block 9, part of which lies in waters disputed by neighbouring Israel. Lebanon said on Friday it had signed its first offshore oil and gas exploration and production contracts for two energy blocks. A consortium of France's Total, Italy's Eni and Russia's Novatek signed contracts for two of the five blocks that Lebanon put up for tender.

Vestas Bets on Geared Turbines in Tough Wind Markets

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Geared turbines said to be cheaper than direct drive rivals and the wind power industry is facing severe cost pressures. Vestas is betting on geared wind turbine technology to meet the ambitious profit-margin target it promised when it reported quarterly results on Wednesday. The world's biggest turbine maker said it targeted a operating profit margin of 9-11 percent in 2018. While…

Oil Faces Weekly Loss as Supply Worries Weigh

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) GearSTD)

Oil prices fell for a sixth day on Friday, and were on track for their biggest weekly losses in 10 months, as record-high U.S. crude output added to concerns about a sharp rise in global supplies. The drop came amid a rout in global equity markets sparked by inflation fears. Brent futures were down 30 cents at $64.51 a barrel by 0925 GMT. On Thursday, Brent fell 1.1 percent to its lowest close since Dec. 20. U.S.

Ardiseis, CGG Complete Highest-Density Seismic Survey

Ardiseis, subsidiary of the Arabian Geophysical and Surveying Company (ARGAS), the Middle East’s seismic acquisition specialist, and its technology partner, CGG, have announced the successful completion of the world’s highest-density broadband seismic survey ever acquired onshore or offshore. The ultra-high density of the data recorded on the West-Kalabsha survey on behalf of Apache…

Texas Flood: U.S. Oil Pours into Global Markets

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) Jose Gill)

United States taking share from OPEC nations in Asia, Europe, as China’s biggest U.S. crude buyer to double imports. In the two years since Washington lifted a 40-year ban on oil exports, tankers filled with U.S. crude have landed in more than 30 countries, ranging from massive economies like China and India to tiny Togo. The repeal has unleashed a flood of U.S. shale oil, undercutting global crude prices…

Oil Dips Below $65 as U.S. Output Soars

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) scanrail)

Brent falls to 2018 low before recovering some losses. Oil prices fell to their lowest in six weeks on Thursday after data showed U.S. crude output had reached record highs and the North Sea's largest crude pipeline reopened following an outage. A stronger dollar, on track for its biggest weekly rise since November 2016, was adding pressure by making it more profitable for holders of other currencies to sell dollar-denominated assets such as oil.

Allseas Plans World's Largest Construction Vessel

Allseas’ planned vessel, to be called Amazing Grace, will be a larger version of the firm’s existing Pioneering Spirit ship, which removed Shell's Brent Delta platform in the North Sea last year (pictured). (Photo: Allseas)

Swiss offshore services firm Allseas is planning to build a vessel big enough to be able to remove the world's largest oil and gas platforms when they reach the end of their production lives, its chief executive said. The vessel, to be called Amazing Grace, is designed to remove the heaviest platforms in a single lift and could reduce decommissioning costs for global oil and gas producers, the firm said.

Statoil Raises Dividend, CapEx as Oil Sector Rebounds

A file image of Statoil's Gullfaks A offshore oil installation.

Stock is best performer of European oil index. Norway's Statoil will raise its dividend, investments and exploration spending in 2018, it said on Wednesday, after higher oil prices helped it beat fourth-quarter earnings forecasts. Like other oil companies, Statoil is also benefiting from efficiencies it pushed through during the sector's downturn, when firms were forced to slash jobs, projects and investment.

Oil steadies, as Inventories Offset U.S. Output

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) mikesjc)

U.S. crude inventories fell by 1.1 million barrels - API. Oil prices were broadly steady on Wednesday, as the boost from a report showing a drop in U.S. crude inventories last week was offset by evidence of soaring U.S. output. Brent crude futures were down 2 cents at $66.84 a barrel by 1135 GMT, while U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures eased 18 cents to $63.21 a barrel.

U.S. Shale Surge Sends Warning to OPEC: Kemp

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) Shamtor)

U.S. crude oil production is set to increase by more than 1.2 million barrels per day in 2018 compared with 2017, according to the latest short-term forecasts from the U.S. Energy Information Administration. U.S. crude production will average almost 10.6 million barrels per day (bpd) this year compared with 9.3 million bpd in 2017 ("Short-Term Energy Outlook", EIA, Feb. 6). The forecast…

Chevron Mulling Participation in Brazil's March Oil Auction

Chevron Corp is considering taking part in an oil auction next month in Brazil as part of a consortium of companies, Brazilian oil regulator ANP said on Tuesday on its website. The auction, slated for March 29, will offer 70 blocks in the offshore Ceará, Potiguar, Sergipe-Alagoas, Campos and Santos basins and on-shore basins of Parnaíba and Paraná. The deadline to register for the auction is Wednesday. Chevron did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

CNOOC: Stampede GoM Project Starts Output

File image: A typical offshore Gulf of Mexico oil installation (CREDIT: Mike Mareen)

Chinese offshore oil and gas company CNOOC Ltd said on Tuesday production at its Stampede deepwater oil and gas field in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico has started. Subsidiaries of CNOOC, Hess Corp, Chevron Corp and Statoil ASA each have a 25-percent stake in the project, while Hess is the operator.

BP Profits Surge, Leaving Downturn Behind

File Image: an offshore oil installation (CREDIT Aker BP)

Annual profit more than doubles to $6.2 bln; Q4 profit jumps to $2.1 bln from $400 mln. BP's profits more than doubled in 2017 to $6.2 billion powered by higher prices and output of oil and gas, allowing the company to resume share buybacks as it recovers from a three-year downturn. The London-listed company saw one of the strongest output increases in its history last year, lifting production to levels not seen since the 2010 Deepwater Horizon spill.

China Surpasses US as Largest Crude Oil Importer

Graph Source: U.S. Energy Information Administration, Petroleum Supply Monthly and Weekly Petroleum Status Report, China General Administration of Customs, based on Bloomberg, L.P.

China took the crown as the world’s largest crude oil importer in 2017, according to U.S. Energy Information Administration press release. China imported 8.4 million barrels per day, and the United States imported 7.9 million barrels per day. China had become the world’s largest net importer (imports minus exports) of total petroleum and other liquid fuels in 2013. New refinery capacity…

UPM May Build New Biofuel Plant in Finland

Pulp and paper maker UPM is looking at building a new renewable fuel plant in Finland, it said on Monday, part of efforts to find new sources of growth in response to falling paper demand in Europe. UPM is the world's largest maker of graphic papers such as newsprint and magazine paper, where demand is in decline due to a shift from print to digital publishing. The proposed plant in Kotka…

Hess Posts 13th Straight Quarterly Loss; Shares Dive

U.S. oil and gas producer Hess Corp posted its 13th straight quarterly loss on Monday as ballooning expenses offset rising crude prices, sending shares down nearly 5 percent. Hess last month began cutting roughly 13 percent of its workforce and streamlining operations, steps it said should help it start to save $150 million annually. For the fourth quarter, Hess posted a loss of $2.68 billion…

Oil Nears One-Month Low, Market Volatility Weighs

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) scanrail)

Oil prices neared their lowest in a month on Monday as rising U.S. output and a weaker physical market added to the pressure from a widespread decline across equities and commodities. Friday's U.S. jobs report that showed the fastest wage growth in nearly nine years exacerbated a broader market sell-off that was already under way as European stocks backed off record highs, and a rising dollar dented commodities.

Hess Corp Posts Q4 Loss on Rising Costs

Hess Corp posted its 13th straight quarterly loss on Monday as the oil and gas producer struggled to rein in expenses. The company's shares were down 2.7 percent at $46.51 in light premarket trading. Hess has slashed jobs and sold assets as it grapples with spiraling costs and project setbacks at a time when other producers focus on capital returns in a higher oil price environment.

Exxon, Chevron Shares Plunge

Exxon Mobil Corp and Chevron Corp posted rare quarterly earnings misses on Friday as cost cuts and rising oil prices failed to offset weakness in international refining operations, sending shares of both companies plunging. Investors were expecting the companies to deliver sharp gains due to stronger crude prices and a rebounding global economy. But excluding U.S. tax benefits, both fell short of expectations, casting a cloud over the U.S.

RTE Warns of Strikes in French Power Sector

Power utilities EDF and Uniper have been notified of a strike in the French power sector which will impact their electricity production, grid operator RTE said on Friday. CGT, one of France's more hardline trade unions, has called for a nationwide strike in the electricity, gas and rail sectors on Feb. 8 to protest against government liberalisation policies in the public sector. RTE…

Imperial Oil Posts Lower-than-expected Adj. Profit

Rich Kruger, Imperial Oil Ltd chairman, president and chief executive officer (Photo: Imperial Oil Ltd)

Canada's Imperial Oil Ltd on Friday reported a lower-than-expected adjusted quarterly profit, hurt by a 22 percent rise in expenses. The Calgary-based company reported a net loss of C$137 million ($111.23 million), or 16 Canadian cents per share, for the fourth quarter as it booked charges of C$566 million related to its Horn River and Mackenzie projects. The company, majority owned by Exxon Mobil Corp…

Chevron Q4 Profit Jumps on Cost Cuts, Tax Gain

U.S. oil producer Chevron Corp said on Friday its quarterly profit jumped more than seven-fold due to cost cuts and rising crude prices. The company posted fourth-quarter net income of $3.1 billion, or $1.64 per share, compared to $415 mnillion, or 22 cents per share, in the year-ago quarter. Chevron saw a $2 billion non-cash benefit related to the recent U.S. tax overhaul. Production rose 3 percent to 2.7 million barrels of oil equivalent per day.

Exxon Q4 Profit Soars

Exxon Mobil Corp, the world's largest publicly-traded oil producer, said on Friday its quarterly profit jumped more than four-fold on rising oil prices and cost cuts. The company posted net income of $8.4 billion, or $1.97 per share, compared to $1.7 billion, or 41 cents per share, in the year-ago quarter. The company saw a $5.9 billion non-cash benefit related to recent U.S. tax reform to revalue deferred taxes.

Brent Crude Nears $70 on OPEC Cuts, Demand

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock/ (c) Kasto)

UBS sees upside for demand growth in 2018. Reuters survey shows strong compliance with output cuts. Brent oil prices held near $70 per barrel, supported by strong compliance with output cuts by OPEC and its ally Russia, as well as expectations for strong demand growth in 2018. Brent futures, the global benchmark, were down 8 cents at $69.57 a barrel by 1104 GMT. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude was up 4 cents at $65.84 a barrel. "The OPEC/non-OPEC production and U.S.

Refining Margins Push Phillips 66 Q4 Profits

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) Sharrif Che'Lah)

U.S. refiner Phillips 66 on Friday beat analysts' quarterly profit estimates, largely helped by higher refining margins. The company said realized refining margins rose to $8.98 per barrel in the fourth quarter, from $6.47 a year earlier. Excluding one-time items, the company earned $1.07 per share, beating analysts' average estimate of 86 cents, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Essar UK to Buy More US Crude in 2018

© Christopher Halloran / Adobe Stock

Essar UK, one of Britain's biggest oil refiners, will buy more U.S. crude this year after testing it last year, showing how rising output from the United States is squeezing out traditional European suppliers from the North Sea and Africa. Essar took at least three cargoes U.S. crude in 2017 for its 200,000 barrel-per-day (bpd) Stanlow oil refinery. "We will continue to take U.S. cargoes because we find value in them…

Swedish Steel Plant to Run on Hydrogen

Steelmaker SSAB plans to build the world's first fossil fuel-free steel plant powered by hydrogen, backed by utility Vattenfall and miner Luossavaara Kiirunavaara, the Swedish firms said on Thursday. The pilot venture will aim to develop technology to later make SSAB's entire production fossil-free, SSAB spokeswoman Viktoria Karsberg said. SSAB's global output reached 8.8 million tonnes in 2017, she said.

US Natgas Production Dips After Pipeline Fire in Ohio

U.S. natural gas production was expected to decline by about 2 percent on Thursday from earlier in the week due in part to an unexpected shutdown of a couple of pipelines in Ohio after a fire early Wednesday, according to Reuters data. The fire and gas release occurred on Tallgrass Energy Partners LP's Seneca Lateral pipe in Noble County in southeast Ohio. There were no injuries or evacuations.