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Energy / Natural Gas

  • Ukraine Turning Its Back On Gazprom

    Quantitative indicators show a dramatic reorientation of Ukraine’s natural gas supply strategy. Dependence on Gazprom has become a thing of the past. Kyiv is demonstrating political resolve to pursue supply diversification and adapt to changing market conditions with the European Commission’s backing. Along with supply diversification, Ukraine’s business practices in the gas trade with Russia are also changing momentously. For the first time in independent Ukraine, the current political leaders have no corporate or personal interest in the gas business, nor do they depend on interest groups linked to the energy sector. Related: Media Spin On Oil Prices Running Out Of…

  • Why Cheap Natural Gas Could Be Here To Stay

    While everyone is watching oil prices bounce around at low levels, natural gas prices are also at their lowest levels in years.   Crude oil is filling up in storage tanks around the country, but natural gas follows more of a seasonal pattern. Between the warmer months of April through October, natural gas producers build up inventories. Then in the colder months, U.S. businesses and consumers burn through some of that storage to keep warm. Related: Top 12 Media Myths On Oil Prices With the winter behind us, peak demand is over for the year. And compared to the harsh winter…

  • Shell Betting Its Future On LNG

    Could the largest energy deal in over a decade begin a new wave of mergers and acquisitions? Is LNG really the future? How Will ExxonMobil Respond? And perhaps more importantly, does the mega-deal between Royal Dutch Shell (RDS.A) and BG Group (LON: BG) portend the end of the bear market for oil? Shell announced on April 8 that it agreed to buy BG Group for an eye-popping $70 billion. The move was surprising, in the sense that a lot of companies in recent years have reined in their spending on high-cost projects outside of North America. Shell, in the midst…

  • Another Major Player Just Signed Onto Mexican Natgas Exports

    That's ONEOK Partners. Specialist operator of a 36,000-mile pipeline network for natural gas and liquids across the southern U.S. This week, ONEOK said it has struck a joint-venture deal to add one more pipeline project to its portfolio -- a 200-mile line to carry natural gas from the Permian Basin of Texas to the Mexican border.Related: Why The Oil Price Collapse Is U.S. Shale’s Fault The pipeline is being advanced in partnership with Mexican midstream operator Fermaca Infrastructure. Owner of the Tarahumara gas pipeline, which spans northern Mexico to the border crossing near the town of San Elizario, Texas. The planned…

  • North American LNG Export Dream Evaporating

    The rush to export natural gas from North America was nice while it lasted. But the spot prices for liquefied natural gas (LNG) in Asia have collapsed, leaving a shrinking opportunity on the table for the plethora of export proposals. Much of that has to do with oil prices falling by half over the past year because LNG prices are linked to the price of oil in much of the world. The latest data from Platts shows that the Japan/Korea Marker (JKM) – the benchmark for LNG in northeast Asia – fell to just $7.279 per million Btu (MMBtu) for…

  • Gazprom Feeling The Heat From Sanctions And Low Energy Prices

    Cracks are widening in Russia’s flagship natural gas producer Gazprom. The state-owned gas company has suffered mightily under the weight of western sanctions and the fall in energy prices. And the results are beginning to show. Gazprom announced that its net income plummeted by 70 percent in 2014, which will result in a cut in its dividend. Those numbers represent the cumulative blow from a bad year for Gazprom in 2014. The company’s troubles went beyond low oil prices and sanctions. Due in part to the conflict in Ukraine, Europe has shown renewed resolve to break Russia’s energy grip, with…

  • Private Equity Investment Gives Major Boon To Natural Gas Market

    Very important, although little discussed, news item emerging Friday. Which could have major consequences in propping up U.S. natural gas prices. The announcement in question was two of the world's largest private equity firms buying into Mexico. Specifically, in supporting the development of key natural gas pipelines in the country. PE stalwarts BlackRock and First Reserve said they have committed to take a 45% interest in two Mexican pipeline projects: Los Ramones Phase II North and Los Ramones Phase II South. The price for the investment was not revealed -- but will likely run into the billions of dollars.Related: US Energy…

  • Ukraine Playing Hardball With Gazprom In New Gas Deal

    Ukraine plans to suspend its gas purchases from Russia on April 1, the day after the current contract expires, in an effort to strengthen Kiev’s bargaining position as the two countries negotiate a new deal that could lower the price of the fuel. Ukraine has been shifting its reliance on gas from Russia to Europe, in large part because of growing tensions between the two countries that have previously led to interruptions in the flow of gas through a Ukrainian pipeline that also serves Western Europe. Europe has been buying about half of its gas from Russia, and about 30…

  • How Much Gas Will Flow Out Of The Marcellus Shale?

    A relatively high-profile natural gas pipeline cleared a key legal hurdle just as another saw increasing opposition from affected landowners.The shale gas revolution has brought a wave of natural gas online in the United States, to be used in electricity generation, manufacturing, and petrochemical processing. But one of the major constraints in fully capitalizing off of the bounty has been the dearth of pipeline infrastructure. Much of the production occurs in Appalachia, but major consumers are on the East Coast, for example.Related: Natural Gas Prices To Crash Unless Rig Count Falls Fast Following the prolific drilling has been a corresponding construction…

  • Natural Gas Prices To Crash Unless Rig Count Falls Fast

    Spending cuts for oil-directed drilling have dominated first quarter 2015 energy news but rig counts for shale gas drilling are too high. Investors should pay attention to this growing problem. Bank of America fears sub-$2 gas prices now that winter heating worries are over. Low natural gas prices affect the economics for gas-rich oil production in the Eagle Ford Shale and Permian basin plays as well as for the shale gas plays. Meanwhile, an orgy of over-production is taking place in the Marcellus Shale. Well head prices are now below $1.50 per thousand cubic feet of gas because of limited…