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Dan Dicker

Dan Dicker

Dan Dicker is a 25 year veteran of the New York Mercantile Exchange where he traded crude oil, natural gas, unleaded gasoline and heating oil…

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Choosing The Winner In U.S. Shale

Shale Rig

Now that oil is backing away marginally from its $50 level, there has been an equal retracement in the price of energy stocks with it. I firmly believe that any retracement you see represents an opportunity, with oil markets now fast rebalancing and production rapidly dropping here in the US. But who do you buy? Further sales of Permian basin assets from Devon Energy (DVN) to Pioneer Natural Resources (PXD) on Thursday have made the heavily leveraged Devon a far better bet than it was even a few short weeks ago, and worth picking up as it hovers near $35 a share.

We had heard from CEO David Hager that he planned up to $3 billion in asset sales in order to retire debt while recommitting capital to their core Oklahoma STACK play, but nothing that’s said on conference calls means a thing until you actually see the strategy being executed. Devon’s sale of Granite Wash assets two weeks ago for about a billion dollars was a very encouraging first sign.

On Thursday, the encouragement got stronger, as Devon sold another $858 million of non-core assets in the Midland subsector of the Permian, bringing their total announced sales already above $2 billion dollars. That’s a superb job of accelerating needed asset sales at reasonable valuations considering today’s oil market – and delivers much of what Hager has promised to shareholders: a stronger balance sheet with a debt reduction of nearly 25 percent of the $10.4 billion of net debt the company…

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