Investor

Uptick in Deepwater Permit Numbers Said Misleading

An apparent uptick in approved permits in the deepwater Gulf of Mexico (GOM) has boosted investor enthusiasm about the near-term prospects for offshore activity but the backlog of permits issued but not yet drilled paints a different picture, according to an analysis by FBR Capital Markets.

October 10, 2011

Industry Brief

Moody’s Investor Services downgraded the credit rating of the Bonneville Power Administration (BPA). BPA goes to an “Aa1” rating from “Aaa,” impacting $6.3 billion in outstanding debt. The outlook was set at “stable.” Moody’s said the downgrade reflects BPA’s increased “hydrology and market price risk,” which has eroded its credit quality during the last several years. Financial reserves available to handle increased risk have dropped by 36% during the two-year period ending with fiscal year 2010, Moody’s said. The ratings agency said it expects the challenges for BPA to continue in the form of “low natural gas prices, sustained lower demand and increasing amounts of wind generation during BPA’s peak surplus energy sales season.”

September 2, 2011

California Renewable Goals on Track; IOUs Avoid Penalties

Although it missed its long-sought 20% renewable portfolio standard (RPS) goal last year, California is on track to hit it this year if projections by the investor-owned utilities (IOU) turn out to be correct and by 2013 if other forecasts turn out to be more accurate. This was the essence of a quarterly report released last Monday by the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC).

April 8, 2011

Encana BC Shale Deal Rumored to be Near

A decision by Encana Corp. to pull out of an investor conference this week ramped up rumors that the natural gas giant may be close to a joint venture agreement with China National Petroleum Corp. (CNPC) to develop its vast British Columbia (BC) shale holdings.

January 18, 2011

People

Calpine Corp. announced the death of William J. Patterson, 48, chairman of its board of directors since January 2008. A private investor and philanthropist in the San Francisco Bay Area, Patterson was a managing director of SPO Partners & Co., an approximate 21% owner of Calpine since it emerged from Chapter 11 bankruptcy in early 2008. Prior to that Patterson chaired the creditors committee that steered Calpine through the bankruptcy process. Ultimately he helped rebuild the board and management team. Calpine said “in due course” its board will meet and appoint a new chairman. Patterson died Sept. 24.

October 4, 2010

Report: U.S. Taxes High on Overseas Profits

The profile of investor-owned companies (IOC) relative to their national oil company (NOC) peers has declined over the last 40 years as NOCs have taken greater control of their home territories and have made significant inroads into the international arena, according to a report by IHS Cambridge Energy Research Associates (IHS CERA) done in conjunction with Deloitte.

August 9, 2010

Report: Taxes at Home Hinder U.S. Energy Companies Abroad

The profile of investor-owned companies (IOC) relative to their national oil company (NOC) peers has declined over the last 40 years as NOCs have taken greater control of their home territories and have made significant inroads into the international arena, according to a report by IHS Cambridge Energy Research Associates (IHS CERA) done in conjunction with Deloitte.

August 3, 2010

California Sets Utility Shutoff Probe, Interim Rules

Lacking a voluntary solution by all the state’s major investor-owned utilities (IOU), the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) last Thursday ordered interim actions by the IOUs to address the mushrooming problem of energy utility service disconnections, along with opening a statewide proceeding on the festering issue. After obtaining stakeholder feedback and ideas in the weeks and months ahead, the CPUC said it intends to act on a final order in June.

February 8, 2010

California Opens Utility Shutoff Probe, Adopts Interim Rules

Lacking a voluntary solution by all the state’s major investor-owned utilities (IOU), the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) Thursday ordered interim actions by the IOUs to address the mushrooming problem of energy utility service disconnections, along with opening a statewide proceeding on the festering issue. After obtaining stakeholder feedback and ideas in the weeks and months ahead, the CPUC said it intends to act on a final order in June.

February 5, 2010

California Opens Utility Shutoff Probe, Adopts Interim Rules

Lacking a voluntary solution by all the state’s major investor-owned utilities (IOU), the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) Thursday ordered interim actions by the IOUs to address the mushrooming problem of energy utility service disconnections, along with opening a statewide proceeding on the festering issue. After obtaining stakeholder feedback and ideas in the weeks and months ahead, the CPUC said it intends to act on a final order in June.

February 5, 2010