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SEC Cries Foul Over Suspected Insider Trading In Anadarko

In the months leading up to the Chevron and Occidental (NYSE: OXY)  bids for Anadarko Petroleum Corp (NYSE: APC), there were suspicious purchases of Anadarko securities, according to the Securities and Exchange Commission, who obtained an order to freeze the assets in question.

The unknown purchases of the Anadarko securities used accounts in Britain and Cyprus, and could rake in millions in profits, according to the court filing cited by Reuters.

Both Chevron and Occidental have bid in Anadarko, with Occidental’s price surpassing the offer made by Chevron. Anadarko today reported that it would continue to negotiate the deal with the higher of the two bids, Occidental. Occidental offered to buy Anadarko at $76 per share, giving Anadarko shareholders $38 in cash and 0.6094 shares of Occidental common stock for each share of Anadarko common stock. This offer was about 20% more than the deal it had previously reached with Chevron.

The deal with Chevron will stand while negotiations with the biggest name in oil in the Permian basin Occidental continue, but the Chevron deal will likely to sidelined in favor of its more generous rival. Chevron, however, publicly announced its confidence that its bid would win out, according to CNN.

Anadarko offers significant exposure to the coveted Permian basin, and will put an already heavy Permian player even more upfront.

Anadarko posted a 7.2 percent drop in adjusted quarterly profit last week with adjusted net income of $259 million. Still, its sales volume of oil and natural gas (including natural gas liquids) was up year on year, averaging 715,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day, up from 643,000 this time last year.

Shares of Occidental were down 2.33% in late afternoon, while shares in Anadarko were trading up 0.21%. Anadarko is trading significantly up week on week.

By Julianne Geiger for Oilprice.com

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