November Prices Dive; Bidweek a Little Softer

The cash market for the concluding days of November hadsomething in common with the famed cliff divers of Acapulco:breathtakingly steep plunges. “You better hope you sold your gasearly” Wednesday because there was almost no demand for the longholiday weekend, a marketer said, “and you just can’t cook thoseThanksgiving turkeys long enough [in gas ovens] to boost demand.”

November 30, 1998

DuPont to Spin Off Conoco by Year-End

DuPont’s board of directors approved the previously announcedinitial public offering (IPO) of Conoco common stock before the endof 1998. Following completion of the IPO, DuPont intends to offerits remaining Conoco shares to DuPont shareholders in exchange forDuPont shares in a tax-free split-off expected to be completedwithin 12 months.

September 29, 1998

Stock Prices Belie Company Performance

The common stocks of some natural gas companies which alreadyhad been showing a downtrend got caught in the sinkhole that wasMonday’s cliffjumper stock market and several established new lows.There was no one explanation for the declines in the stocks of someof the hardest hit, including Coastal Corp., Consolidated NaturalGas, Dynegy, El Paso Energy and Williams. Some were pointing to thecompanies’ exposure in the international arena or to declining oil,natural gas and liquids prices for the trend.

September 1, 1998

Paladin: Avoid Common Marketing Mistakes

Marketers hoping to capitalize on the deregulating energymarketplace would be wise to examine the strategies used in otherderegulated businesses, according to a paper by The Paladin Group.Paladin said energy marketers could fail by repeating mistakes ofthe past.

July 30, 1998

ConEd Buying O&R Utilities for $790 Million

Consolidated Edison and Orange and Rockland Utilities agreed tomerge with ConEd acquiring all the common stock of O&R for$58.50 per share in a deal worth about $790 million. O&R wouldbecome a wholly owned subsidiary of ConEd. The transaction would beaccounted for as a purchase and is expected to be accretive toConEd’s earnings per share after the first year.

May 12, 1998

Cash Flat Again but Expected to Follow Screen Up

Cash price quotes again put on their stuck-in-cement actWednesday as flatness remained the common denominator among mostmarkets. But snowy conditions in the Rockies couldn’t keep mostof the region’s pipes from softening into the mid $1.90s.Denver-Julesburg Basin gas into CIG yielded about the only Rockiesquotes still above $2. A Denver-area trading firm reportedly closedits offices early Wednesday because of the snowstorm, as did manyColorado schools.

March 19, 1998

Phone Lines Dead; Nymex Trading Disrupted

Surprise, even shock, are common reactions to what occurs on the New York Mercantile Exchange on expiration day of a spot month gas futures contract, but yesterday many natural gas traders must have come close to suicidal trauma. Not because of price volatility, however. At about 1:50 p.m. EST, someone at the Teleport Communications Group, the telephone carrier that serves the trading floors of the New York Mercantile Exchange, pulled the plug. All commodity trading, including of course gas futures, screeched to a halt, creating a hair-raising state of panic.

February 26, 1998
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