Chevron Corp.’s sweetened bid for Unocal Corp. won’t affect Chevron’s credit ratings (Aa2 senior long-term, Prime-1 commercial paper), Moody’s Investors Service said Thursday. Chevron increased the cash portion of its offer for Unocal on Wednesday to $7.5 billion from $4.4 billion, valuing the total transaction at $17.8 billion, including a reduced amount of net debt to be assumed (see Daily GPI, July 21). Unocal’s board has recommended that its shareholders approve the proposed merger in a special meeting scheduled for Aug. 10.
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The trial date for one of five former natural gas traders who were indicted in late November on charges of reporting false trades has been pushed back to August from February, according to a published report. The trials of four other ex-traders also may be rescheduled.
Lawmakers meeting last Thursday to craft a comprehensive energy bill reached a compromise related to pipeline integrity inspections under which facilities with the highest risk factors will be given priority for completing inspections within a five-year period.
Conectiv, a Mid-Atlantic electric and gas utility, announcedsweeping changes in its strategic focus earlier this week, but didnot alter its plan for gas operations. Conectiv said the changeswere made due to a clearing regulatory picture in the areas itserves.