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Finance

  • The Best Kept Secret In U.S. Shale

    This isn’t the story of oil in the 1980s. Though forecasters are predicting oil below $40 per barrel and North American producers are slashing spending and dividends, major projects are being put on hold, and the most vulnerable are defaulting, there are still some sweet spots where production costs are low and profit is still promising. From the Permian Basin in Texas to the North Williston Basin in Canada’s Saskatchewan, investors can still reap rewards with exploration and production companies who are operating in prolific plays where low drilling and extraction costs rule the day. Oil producers of all sizes…

  • This Unlikely Spot Just Got $465 Million in Oil Investment

    We're not hearing a lot these days about investment in new petroleum projects. West Texas Intermediate oil prices are once again testing $45. And natgas prices in places like the U.S. are still hovering near decade lows. Meaning that most producers and financial backers are laying off plans for acquisitions and drilling. But one place bucked that trend last week. Receiving a big cash injection from some of the biggest investors in the energy sector. That's the Western Canadian Sedimentary Basin.Related: Why The World Needs Both Shale And Tar Sands Energy private equity giant Riverstone Holdings announced last Wednesday that it…

  • Is America Missing This Upcoming Mining Hotspot?

      I've talked before about the significant mining potential of one of the world's pariah states--Iran. And news last week suggests that big investors are starting to catch on. At least from certain parts of the world. Specifically, Asian mining firms appear to be circling Iran, looking for new opportunities in the minerals sector. With a major delegation from the East touring the country to look at potential projects.Related: India May Become World’s Largest Coal Importer Local press reports that a group of Asian mining professionals is currently in Iran--looking to "go ahead with investment" in the mining sector. With these…

  • Here's A Big Casualty Of The Oil Price Rout

    Big reports emerging in the oil space this week. Showing that the recent fall in oil prices is spurring some major project shuffling from the world's leading firms. The company in question is Shell--which recent filings suggest is close to a deal to divest long-time holdings in one of its key oil-producing regions. Offshore Brazil. The company will reportedly sell its 80% stake in the Bijupira and Salema fields to Brazilian operator HRT. The price tag for the deal wasn't disclosed, but is likely to be significant given that production from these projects runs more than 30,000 barrels per day.Related: Corruption…

  • This Financial Crisis Is Giving Coal An Unexpected Boost

      Some good news and bad news for the coal market this week. From one of the key consuming centers on the planet: Europe. Reuters reports that coal imports into Europe have been surging, from one particular source. The nearby coal mining superpower of Russia. All told, Russian coal exports jumped a notable 8.8% during the January to November 2014 period, as compared to the previous year. Reaching a total of 140.2 million tons.Related: Expanding Russia Issues Europe An Ultimatum The development is surprising, given that coal markets in many other parts of the world have been flagging of late. But…

  • EV Sales Continue Despite Low Oil Prices

    In this article, I explain why falling oil prices didn't affect Tesla or EV sales last year and why, up to a point, they are not likely to do so in the future. Following my latest contribution to Seeking Alpha, in the context of global warming and climate change, one of the causes of the current oil price downfall might be a diminution of demand for major petroleum derivatives (i.e. gasoline and diesel) due to a process of electrification in the global automotive industry. To the extent that falling prices are meant to be a structural phenomenon, they shouldn't result…

  • To Whether and Thrive: An Energy Investment Thesis for the Tough Times

    Picking an investment thesis in these challenging resource markets has never been more paramount to investors. The downward spiral of oil prices combined with a myriad of corporate factors such as high debt and dividends has begun to challenge a significant number of companies and business models. This may lead to investors seeking refuge in other parts of the investment world but with the 40% decline in oil prices thus far, companies with extremely exciting prospects have become exceptionally unique from a valuation standpoint. But at the moment, when it comes to energy companies or anything energy related it seems…

  • Banking On North America‚Äôs Final Oil & Gas Frontier

    North America’s last highly accessible onshore oil and gas frontier is in Canada’s Saskatchewan province in the prolific Williston Basin, and the undiscovered sweet spot may be the Little Swan--a prospect with a little name, but massive potential.    The company to keep an eye on here is Bayhorse Silver Inc. (TSX Venture: BHS), which in early November entered into a farm-in agreement with Saturn Minerals Inc. to earn a 50% of Saturn's interest in Little Swan’s 253,000-acre oil and gas prospect. While the Williston Basin already produces over 1 million barrels of light crude oil per day, projections are that…

  • Is MCW Oil Sands The Lowest Cost Unconventional Oil Play In North America?

    MCW Energy Group, Inc. (MCWEF) updated the market Monday Dec 26th on their new oil sands production plant in Vernal Utah and progress on major joint venture projects globally.In addition, some back-of-the-napkin math updating their of their oil production cost assumptions makes MCW Oil Sands Recovery by far the lowest cost unconventional oil producer in North America…and quite possibly the world ex-Venezuela.First, MCW Oil Sands Recovery LLC reports they have begun the final phase of commercial oil production mode which will have an anticipated capacity of at least 250 bbl/day. An exemption for an Air Quality Permit has been filed…

  • Kenya Exploration Strong Despite Oil Price Slump

    Despite falling oil prices, investors betting on the longer-term—and a price rebound—should be eyeing exploration and development in Kenya’s massive eastern Lokichar and Anza basins, where the big winners will be those who dig in for the long-term game.While the recent slump in oil prices could hamper exploration on a global level, Kenya and its recent finds may be more immune than other areas. In fact, exploration and production companies are cutting costs in other areas in order to shift focus to Kenya, which is poised to become the key East African oil and gas hub.Kenya appears resilient to faltering…