U.S. rig count up in 19th straight weekly increase

Drillers dispatched another seven oil and gas rigs to U.S. fields over the past week, Baker Hughes said Friday, marking the rig count’s 19th consecutive weekly increase. That increase brought the nation’s active rig count up to 908, up from a record low of 404 this time last year. Five of the rigs added this …

Fire at Anadarko oil tank site kills worker, injures three others

A fire at an oil tank battery owned by Anadarko Petroleum Corp. killed one worker and injured three others in Colorado on Thursday afternoon, authorities and the company confirmed. Contracted workers were doing maintenance work at an oil tank facility near Mead, Colorado, when an oil tank battery ignited, the Woodlands-based Anadarko said. Local authorities …

Petrobras, Shell fire up pre-salt oil field off Brazil

A first-of-its-kind vessel owned by Petrobras and Shell has begun pumping oil off Brazil in one of the world’s most lucrative deep-water basins. Shell said Friday the companies fired up their first cloned offshore vessel assembled with standard parts and equipment in the pre-salt Santos Basin, a prolific region where some wells produce three times …

Oil prices tank as OPEC deal on output cuts disappoints traders

Oil prices tanked early Thursday after OPEC reached an agreement to cap oil production for another nine months at the same level that couldn’t fix the oversupplied oil market this year. The U.S. oil benchmark fell as much as 5.1 percent from $51.36 to $48.75 on Thursday, underscoring how much speculators had driven up the …

Are OPEC production cuts a done deal?

A powerful consortium of oil producers that includes Saudi Arabia and Russia will try to goose lackluster oil prices this week with promises to extend previous output cuts for several months and perhaps into next year. At a semiannual gathering in Vienna on Thursday, Saudi-led OPEC and other oil-producing nations are expected to strike a …

EOG Resources gets $400 million from private equity group

EOG Resources will get a $400 million cash infusion from private equity group Carlyle to develop oil and gas assets in Oklahoma over the next four years. The Houston oil producer’s joint venture with one of Carlyle’s energy investment arms comes as private equity firms pour billions into a resurgent U.S. oil industry, looking to …

Rig contractor to pay up to $100M for big data tech firm

Helmerich & Payne, the largest U.S. rig contractor, is set to buy a small Dallas firm touting technology that can guide drill bits to oil-soaked rock with cognitive computing. The Oklahoma drilling contractor will pay $75 million to purchase Motive Drilling Technologies, but that price tag could include additional payouts of up to $25 million …

BP begins pumping oil from UK North Sea field

BP has begun pumping oil from a redeveloped field in the United Kingdom’s North Sea, firing up its third major project this year, the company said Monday. The British oil company’s North Sea project, dubbed Quad 204 west of the Scottish Shetland isles, will produce 130,000 barrels of oil a day at its height this …

U.S. rig count surges to more than 900

Despite chaotic turns in the oil market in recent weeks, the U.S. oil industry comeback shows no sign yet of slowing down. The number of rigs drilling for oil and gas across the nation climbed by 16 in the past week, marking the 18th consecutive weekly increase, Baker Hughes said Friday. The oil field service …

Texas oil jobs climbing amid drilling surge

Texas oil companies expanded payrolls for the third month in a row in March amid a surge in drilling activity, the Dallas Fed says. The number of oil and gas jobs in the state rose by 3,500 to 211,700 in March, with the biggest gains coming from the oil field services sector, according to a …

Anadarko to disconnect Colorado gas lines after home blast

Anadarko Petroleum Corp. says it will permanently disconnect the 1-inch lines running underground from its vertical wells in northeastern Colorado, a response to the fatal home blast near one of its old wells there. Natural gas flows through these low-pressure lines to power oil field equipment that separates the oil a company produces from the …

Conoco investors reject exec pay in advisory vote

Investors rejected a compensation plan for ConocoPhillips’ top executives in an advisory vote on Monday, signaling disapproval in the company’s pay levels last year. Sixty-eight percent of the Houston oil company’s shareholders voted against or abstained in the so-called say-on-pay vote over its 2016 compensation, according to preliminary tallies. Last year, 83 percent of the …

IEA sees oil market rebalance but warns of Libya, Nigeria surge

U.S. shale drillers aren’t the only ones threatening to offset OPEC’s oil production cuts. Signs of a resurgence of oil production in Libya and Nigeria, both OPEC members, has the potential to dampen the cartel’s efforts to curb the global oversupply of oil, the International Energy Agency said Tuesday. In its monthly oil market report, …

U.S. rig count climbs for 17th week

Even as oil prices tumbled further below $50 a barrel, U.S. companies sent nine more oil-drilling rigs to fields in Texas and other states over the past week, Baker Hughes said Friday. That brought the nation’s fleet of oil rigs up to 712, up from an all-time low of 316 nearly a year ago. The …

As prices rise, oil companies drill down on industrial cyber security

In recent months, more U.S. oil company boards have demanded IT managers prove refineries and drilling rigs are protected against cyberattacks, the chief of a security firm says. Rising oil prices and increased awareness of industrial cyber threats seem to have spurred new corporate-level maneuvers this year to secure computer controls that run energy facilities, …

OPEC projects surge in U.S. oil production

U.S. shale drillers could pump a lot more oil than previously expected this year, OPEC said Thursday. In a monthly report, the cartel said it has revised its 2017 forecast for oil production in countries outside of OPEC up by 370,000 barrels a day. More than three quarters of the increase will come from the …

BP fires up first gas fields in $12 billion Egypt project

BP has fired up two natural gas fields in the Mediterranean Sea near Egypt, the start of a $12 billion development expected to supply nearly a third of the African country’s gas in coming years. The British oil company began producing gas from the Taurus and Libra fields off the coast of Egypt eight months …

EOG banks first profit in nearly two years; pumps record oil

EOG Resources collected its first profit in nearly two years in the first quarter, wringing money from a revived oil patch amid higher energy prices, the company said Monday. The Houston oil explorer pumped more oil than ever as it slashed the costs of bringing wells into production in Texas and North Dakota. Related: EOG …

BP, Kosmos find another giant gas pocket off Senegal

BP and Kosmos Energy have discovered another giant pocket of gas off the coast of Senegal, one that could underpin a future liquefied natural gas hub in the region. About 59 miles northwest of Dakar, the capital of Senegal in West Africa, the explorers drilled a nearly three-mile-long deep-water well in 8,300 feet of water, …

Oil bankruptcies slow, even as market recovery wobbles

After a two-year downpour, bankruptcies in the oil patch have slowed dramatically, new data shows. In the first four months of the year, the number of new oil and gas Chapter 11 cases have come in much lower than what it was in the same period last year, according to reports this week by Dallas …

Q & A: How new technologies shear deepwater costs

The recovery in energy prices won’t produce a mad rush into deep-water fields anytime soon, but drillers are still spending billions this year on more cost-efficient projects that can outlast cheap oil, says the executive who leads Shell’s deep-water business. Over the next two years, Royal Dutch Shell plans to spend up to $14 billion …

Offshore crane simulator an OTC staple, but real training still depressed

Suddenly, the waves rose higher, the weather turned and the giant machine began wobbling as Farrel Alexander tapped a few keys controlling the offshore crane simulation. In the hallways of the Offshore Technology Conference on Wednesday, the mild-mannered but vengeful Poseidon instructed the virtual-crane operator to try latching the crane’s hook to a stack of …

Petrobras CEO working to pull company out of financial crisis

Corruption scandals and a devastating economic recession dethroned Brazil’s first female president and nearly crippled its partly state-owned oil company Petrobras. As Brazil’s economy shrank more than 3 percent, Petrobras’ debts ballooned to $130 billion, five times its pre-tax earnings, and its shares dropped 70 percent, hammered by the revelations of collusion and kickbacks between …

Colorado investigators link fatal home explosion to Anadarko well

Colorado investigators have linked a fatal home explosion last month to a faulty gas line connected to an old well owned by Anadarko Petroleum. The Frederick-Firestone Fire Protection District said Tuesday it traced the explosion that killed two men and injured a woman to a natural gas leak from a “cut, abandoned gas flow line” …

OTC speaker: Oil companies should bulk up cybersecurity

As oil companies outfit offshore platforms and drilling rigs with more automated, interconnected devices such as sensors, they should pay more attention to keeping those systems protected from online attacks, a speaker said at the Offshore Technology Conference on Tuesday. “People are out there looking to find things connected to the internet,” said John Jorgensen, …

Linn Energy to sell Wyoming assets for $581 million

Linn Energy plans to sell oil and gas properties in western Wyoming for $581.5 million to Colorado producer Jonah Energy, it said Tuesday. It’s selling off assets that produced about 129 million cubic feet of natural gas equivalent a day across 27,500 net acres, with proved reserves of 384 billion cubic feet of natural gas …

Noble Energy sells off Marcellus gas assets for $1.2 billion

Noble Energy has struck a deal to sell off its assets in the natural gas-rich Marcellus Basin in the northeastern United States for $1.2 billion. It didn’t name the buyer in its statement on Tuesday. The Houston company said $100 million of the $1.2 billion price tag will come from three equal contingent payments that …

Big fracking trucks make inroads at Offshore Technology Conference

It’s hard to miss the 66,000-pound truck sitting in the exposition hall at the Offshore Technology Conference. Netherlands-based J.H. Larsen, a water recycling-equipment company, hoped strapping its giant pumps onto a grey-steel Kenmore in Houston truck would turn heads and attract some buyers from the U.S. oil patch. Since the advent of U.S. shale drilling, …

At OTC, Brazil touts reforms in hopes drillers will invest

Plagued by recent corruption scandals, Brazil is working to lure oil companies to new exploration contracts, offering the most offshore acreage in its history and promising to lower local content requirements, taxes and royalties for riskier investments. The South American country plans to auction off 287 exploration blocks in 10 separate bidding rounds over the …

Exxon profits surge amid higher oil prices

Exxon Mobil Corp.’s profit more than doubled in the first quarter, as its oil-production business swung back from a loss amid rising crude prices, the company said Friday. The Irving, Texas-based oil company made $4 billion, or 95 cents a share, in the first quarter, compared to $1.8 billion, or 43 cents a share, in …

Anadarko shares drop amid Colorado home explosion investigation

Investors lopped off $1.5 billion from Anadarko Petroleum Corp.’s stock-market value on Thursday on the news it’s cooperating with an investigation by Colorado officials into a fatal home explosion near one of its old wells. Anadarko shares closed at $57.13 on Thursday, down 4.7 percent, or $2.83, from the previous day, its lowest price since …

Shale investments have surged by $100 billion, Rystad says

Ever since OPEC began cutting oil production, drilling in the United States has surged. Norwegian consultancy Rystad Energy estimates $100 billion in investment funds has flowed into the U.S. shale industry over the past year, propping up domestic drilling by 60 percent. So-called completion activity – procedures like hydraulic fracturing that stimulate shale wells – …

Oil discoveries dropped to record low in 2016, IEA says

The oil industry only found 2.4 billion barrels of oil last year, the smallest annual figure ever recorded, the International Energy Agency said Thursday. The Paris-based group, which advises oil-importing countries, said last year’s small number of oil discoveries compares to an average 9 billion barrels discovered each year between 2000 and 2015. Energy companies …

Patterson-UTI losses narrow in first quarter as rigs jump

Houston rig contractor Patterson-UTI narrowed its losses in the first quarter as its active U.S. rig fleet climbed by nearly a quarter. The company lost $63.5 million,  or 40 cents a share, in the January-March period, compared to a loss of $70.5 million,  or 48 cents a share, in the same three-month period last year. …

Judge orders Exxon to pay $20M in air emissions suit

A federal judge in Houston has ordered Exxon Mobil to pay a nearly $20 million civil penalty for releasing 10 million pounds of pollutants into the air from its Baytown refining and chemical complex from 2005 to 2013. In a Wednesday ruling, U.S. District Judge David Hittner said evidence showed the Texas oil company’s emissions …

Anadarko cooperating with investigation into fatal Colorado home blast

Anadarko Petroleum Corp. is cooperating with an investigation of a fatal house explosion in Colorado that killed two men and injured a woman last week near one of the company’s 24-year-old wells. State agencies and fire officials haven’t determined the cause of the blast. Anadarko’s well, drilled in 1993 by another company, is about 200 …

Big pay days for some energy executives after bankruptcy

Six years ago, Houston oilman Floyd Wilson struck it rich with the blockbuster sale of Petrohawk Energy, making billions for investors and earning a reputation as a farseeing wildcatter. His next venture, Halcón Resources Corp., fell prey to the oil bust. The company slashed more than a third of its workforce, wrote down billions in …

Oil service costs could rise 15 percent this year, Wood Mac says

As crude prices stabilize and drilling rigs dig into shale plays again, oil field service costs are beginning to rise back up. That could squeeze drillers’ margins later this year. Energy research firm Wood Mackenzie believes oil field service costs could jump 15 percent this year overall, with prices for some equipment and services possibly …

US rig count climbs by 10 in 14th weekly rise

The number of rigs drilling across the nation jumped by 10 this week, an even 5-5 split between oil and gas rigs, Baker Hughes said Friday For 14 straight weeks, the U.S. rig count has climbed higher as oil prices have mostly held sturdy around $50 a barrel in recent months. The nation’s rig fleet …

Schlumberger posts $279M profit after previous quarter loss

Increased hydraulic fracturing in the United States helped lift Schlumberger back into profitability in the first quarter after a loss in the previous three months. But even as sequential quarterly earnings improved, the largest oil field service company reported on Friday a decline in net income to $279 million, or 20 cents a share, compared …

Exxon confirms Texas site for $10B petrochemical complex

Exxon Mobil and its Saudi partner have agreed on a spot near Corpus Christi for a proposed $10 billion petrochemical facility, the companies said Wednesday. The Irving-based oil company and the Saudi Basic Industries Corporation, known as SABIC, still don’t expect to make a final decision on whether to assemble the joint-venture project until next …

Energy XXI taps new CEO, awards shares

Energy XXI Gulf Coast has tapped Douglas Brooks, the former chief executive of a private oil explorer, to become its new CEO, the company said Tuesday. Brooks, 58, had previously led privately held Yates Petroleum Corp. before its sale to EOG Resources for $2.5 billion last year. He also served in other executive roles in …

Shale oil on the rise this month, EIA says

Oil production across the seven major U.S. shale plays could climb by 124,000 barrels a day over the next month as drilling continues to boom, the Energy Department said Monday. More than half of the increase will come from the Permian Basin in West Texas, where daily crude output is expected to climb 3.3 percent …

Blackstone to pipe $2 billion into West Texas midstream firm

Private equity giant Blackstone plans to snap up a midstream company in the Delaware Basin for $2 billion, it said Monday. It’s the latest in a series of corporate deals that come as companies jockey for a foothold in the nation’s hottest shale play. Blackstone’s energy investment arm struck an all-cash deal to buy EagleClaw …

Banks raise borrowing bases for some oil companies

Banks have given a handful of U.S. oil companies an extra financial boost this month, increasing the amount of money they can borrow for new drilling projects and other purposes. Lenders have recently lifted the so-called borrowing bases of Houston’s Oasis Petroleum, Ultra Petroleum, Wildhorse Resource Development Corp. and Midland-based Concho Resources, a sign of …

US rig count expands yet again in 13th weekly gain

Oil companies set up more drilling rigs in U.S. oil fields over the past week, expanding the nation’s rig count for the thirteenth consecutive week, Baker Hughes said Thursday. All told, drillers dispatched 11 oil rigs and idled three natural gas rigs, lifting the fleet by eight to 847, a figure more than twice the …

IEA warns of resurgent US oil, slower demand growth

Even though OPEC is trying to contain the oil glut, production is set to increase worldwide this year, the International Energy Agency said Thursday. In its monthly report, the IEA said oil production could rise by 485,000 barrels a day around the world this year even as Saudi Arabia, Iraq and other major producers slash …

Conoco to sell San Juan Basin stake for $3 billion

ConocoPhillips plans to sell its stake in the natural gas-rich San Juan Basin to Hilcorp Energy for as much as $3 billion, the company said Thursday. The Houston oil explorer said its 1.3 million acres stretching from Colorado to New Mexico will fetch $2.7 billion in cash, as well as contingent payments of $7 million …

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