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A major U.S. shale oil producer is looking to start a land selloff in the lone star state10/05/2021
Pioneer Natural Resources Co PXD.N, one of the nation's largest oil companies by output, has put up for sale its onshore assets in the Delaware basin of Texas intending to raise over $2 billion.
This move comes to light following crude oil prices rebound after last year's pandemic-induced crash. Gas and oil are hiking to new heights as the demand for exports is rising. The price of West Texas Intermediate Crude is now at about $70 per barrel. As a result of the recovery, producers are finally able to shed some underperforming properties, igniting a shale consolidation wave.
In the event of a successful sale, Pioneer would be left concentrating on the Midland Permian, its traditional base of operation.
Through divestment, Pioneer likely wants to streamline its upstream portfolio. Since at present, investors are pressing more and more upstream companies for a higher shareholder value, not production, so they are forced to focus on finding profitable resources instead.
The need for Pioneer to restructure its business and reduce debt is understandable, giving a big splurge earlier this year when it completed two acquisitions valued at over $1 billion each. The oilfield services business was already sold by Pioneer for an undisclosed sum in March to kickstart the process. As speculated, the company has agreed to sell approximately 20,000 net acres in western Glasscock County, Texas, to Laredo Petroleum for as much as $230 million under its assets sale plan.
Pioneer paid $6.2 billion for Midland-basin rival DoublePoint Energy after closing the Parsley deal in January. As a result of the deals, companies’ total debt amounted to no less than $6.9 billion at the end of June, spiking more than 100% up from $3.1 billion six months prior.
With this convenient acquisition, the company now owns 97,000 acres in the Permian Basin, making it one of the biggest producers there. Through the transaction, the acquirer now controls approximately 1 million acres of basin land.
Apart from offsetting its debt, Pioneer also recently pushed forward with the notion of paying a variable quarterly dividend starting in September instead of the first quarter of 2022 as was planned earlier. Not surprising, considering boosted buybacks and dividends are part of the wider effort of shale companies to improve investor confidence following years of sub-par returns compared to other industries.
Therefore a detailed analysis of such intel becomes a useful necessity for any financial endeavor. The map-based asset intelligence provided by Rextag, as shown, allows business development teams to rapidly and accurately analyze and grab all and any opportunities such as Pioneer's proposed sale from a holistic standpoint, including midstream.
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Comstock Resources decided to go through with asset divestment, selling its Bakken Shale actives for $150M to Northern Oil and Gas. The proceeds from these sales will be reinvested by Comstock Resources Inc. into the Haynesville Shale, at which point the company may acquire additional leasehold and fund drilling activities starting in 2022. Meanwhile, Northern clearly gunning for the pack leading position in the Texas shale play, but whether they succeed or not is remains to be seen.
A good asset will not sit on the market for long. After a deal with Berkshire Hathaway fell through, Dominion Energy managed to secure another one for Questar Pipelines in a drop of a hat. And get that, it is better than the former one by more than half a billion! Although not everyone is happy with such decisions, it seems that even Carl Icahn’s complaints won't be able to sway Southwest Gas Holdings’ decision. Though we will have our eyes peeled in any case… If everything goes as planned, a $2 billion deal will be closed before the end of the year.
Oil output in the Permian Basin in Texas and New Mexico is supposed to go up 88,000 bbl/d to a record 5.219 million bbl/d in June, as the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) announced in its report on May 16. Additionally, gas productivity in the Permian Basin and the Haynesville in Texas, Louisiana and Arkansas will rise to record highs of 20 Bcf/d and 15.1 Bcf/d in June, respectively. Given that this growth has been expected, recent global market changes make forecasting the output even more challenging. Learning how production will change is easier with early activity tracking, a new service recently launched by Rextag – Pad Activity Monitor. With the help of PAM, you are able to monitor well pad clearing, drilling operations, fracking crew deployment and completions with new data collected approximately every 2 days. Additionally, it cuts down activity reporting lag times by at least 98%, from 120-180 days down to just 5-8 days. In order to access reports, charts, tables, and mapping visualizations via Rextag’s Energy DataLink use a web-based application allowing users to filter, download and identify activity on a map or data table. Moreover, customers will be able to set up daily, weekly, and monthly email report notifications.
The EIA forecasts that total output in the main U.S. shale oil basins will increase 142,000 bbl/d to 8.761 million bbl/d in June, the most since March 2020. Oil productivity in the Permian Basin in Texas and New Mexico is supposed to go up 88,000 bbl/d to a record 5.219 million bbl/d in June, as the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) announced in its report on May 16. In the largest shale gas basin, the productivity in Appalachia in Pennsylvania, Ohio and West Virginia will grow up to 35.7 Bcf/d in June, its highest since beating a record 36 Bcf/d in December 2021. Gas output in the Permian Basin and the Haynesville in Texas, Louisiana and Arkansas will rise to record highs of 20 Bcf/d and 15.1 Bcf/d in June, respectively. Speaking of the Permian future output, putting hands on upcoming changes in production has recently been made easier with the new Rextag's service - Pad Activity Monitor. Thanks to satellite imagery and artificial intelligence, customers are able to monitor the oil and gas wells and are provided with near real-time activity reports related to drilling operations. However, it is noticed that productivity in the largest oil and gas basins has decreased every month since setting records of new oil well production per rig of 1,544 bbl/d in December 2020 in the Permian Basin, and new gas well production per rig of 33.3 MMcf/d in March 2021 in Appalachia.
No sooner had the crude prices soared above $100/bbl than the industry professionals believed in an incredible growth of drilling activity in North America’s largest shale patch. Analysts speculate that additional output of 500,000 barrels of oil daily would become a significant part (4%) of overall U.S. daily production. That is going to flatter oil and gasoline prices. Drilling permits in the Permian Basin are persistently growing, averaging approximately 210 at the beginning of April. Moreover, the permits trend is noticed as an all-time high as a total of 904 horizontal drilling permits were awarded last month. Nowadays, learning and analysing the current situation and predicting the future development become easier with early activity tracking, a new service recently launched by Rextag. Rextag's Pad Activity monitor (PAM) allows you to see well pad clearing, drilling operations, fracking crew deployment and completions with new data collected approximately every 2 days with the help of satellite imagery and artificial intelligence. While the increase in drilling will result in higher production, U.S. shale producers will have to overcome several hurdles including labor shortages and supply constraints.