(Reuters) – Schlumberger (SLB.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), the world’s largest oilfield services company, posted a quarterly profit that was slightly ahead of forecasts as business outside North America and in deepwater regions improved, sending its shares up 5 percent.
The company expects 10 percent growth this year in the number of rigs working outside North America, which has been the big profit driver in recent years, and said pricing in international markets was improving.
NEW YORK (Reuters) – Shares of Chesapeake Energy Corp (CHK.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) fell more than 10 percent on Wednesday after a Reuters report that Chief Executive Aubrey McClendon borrowed as much as $1.1 billion over the last three years against his stake in thousands of company wells.
Those loans that were previously undisclosed to shareholders, analysts and academics said, raise worries about the potential for conflict of interest. McClendon and the company insist there is no conflict.
April 18 (Reuters) – Halliburton Co, the world’s
second-largest oilfield services company, reported a higher
quarterly profit as North American sales hit a record high
despite major challenges, and its shares rose more than 4
Chief Executive Officer David Lesar attributed the company’s
strength in North America to new oil drilling activity in the
United States. That helped offset a drop in natural gas drilling
due to weak U.S. prices, which have fallen to their lowest point
in a decade.
April 17 (Reuters) – First Solar Inc said it would
cut production of its thin-film solar panels and slash 2,000
jobs, or about 30 percent of its workforce, as the largest U.S.
solar maker speeds up its cost-cutting efforts.
The news sent First Solar shares up more than 5 percent in
Solar panel manufacturers have struggled amid a steep
decline in selling prices for the solar equipment over the past
year that has sent share prices in the sector plummeting.
Several companies have gone into bankruptcy.
April 10 (Reuters) – Solar panels prices have kept marching
lower this year, extending steep declines seen in 2011 and
keeping pressure on hard-hit manufacturers who have struggled to
eke out profits, industry experts said.
Average selling prices for the photovoltaic modules that
turn sunlight into electricity have dropped to 80 to 85 cents
per watt, a decline of more than 10 percent from levels near 95
cents recorded at the end of 2011, a year that saw prices fall
by about 50 percent.
By Matt Daily
(Reuters) – What’s a barrel of oil worth these days?
Investors in London lopped off roughly $12 billion in Shell’s market value on Thursday morning after reports of oil in the water around Shell’s Gulf of Mexico operations. Later Shell said the oily sheen spotted on Wednesday totaled about 6 barrels.
April 11 (Reuters) – Engineering and construction group
Black & Veatch is looking for a way to get paid from
cash-strapped, U.S. towns for fixing their water supply systems,
the head of the company said on Wednesday.
Many of those municipalities have seen their tax revenues
shrink in recent years, forcing them to delay upgrades to aging
water delivery and waste water systems, Len Rodman, the chief
executive and chairman of the privately held company told
Reuters in an interview.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Rapid growth in the U.S. biofuels markets has often pitted oil companies against small start-ups seeking a toehold in the gasoline markets, despite the need for both sides to work together, according to industry experts.
U.S. gasoline consumption peaked in 2007 as corn-based production surged and more fuel-efficient cars joined the nation’s fleet, and crude oil-based gasoline demand is likely to see its market share eroded further when a new wave of advanced biofuels plants come on line over the next three years.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Codexis Inc (CDXS.O: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) expects oil company Royal Dutch Shell (RDSa.L: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) to make a decision around mid-year about extending or expanding a partnership to develop cellulosic ethanol, Peter Strumph, the company’s interim chief executive said on Tuesday.
Codexis, which makes enzymes and microorganisms to produce ethanol from plant waste, got about half of its $123.9 million in revenues last year through a research partnership with Shell and Raizan, the Brazilian joint venture of Shell and sugar and energy producer Cosan (CSAN3.SA: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz).
By Matt Daily
(Reuters) – The first-ever U.S. proposal to restrict carbon dioxide emissions would have once been a major shock to electricity companies by making it uneconomic to build new coal-fired power plants.
But the discovery of abundant supplies of cheap natural gas means that many of those plants won’t get built anyway – making the Obama administration’s plan, while painful for the coal industry, much less relevant.