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Whiting Wants Pieces Sold Off, Not The Whole Thing

BY CIARAN MCEVOY, INVESTOR’S BUSINESS DAILY, March 13, 2015

Whiting Petroleum (NYSE:WLL) reportedly is looking to sell off Texas pipeline assets and acreage in order to boost its balance sheet, weighed down by billions of dollars in debt.
The Denver-based Whiting was shopping around for a buyer for its entire business, but interest in the company was muted given its debt load, enlarged by its assumption of more than $2 billion in credit when it bought smaller rival Kodiak Oil & Gas in December, Reuters reported, citing unnamed sources.

It reportedly is seeking to sell off pieces of the company as an alternative to selling it in its entirety.

Earlier this week, Bloomberg reported that Norway’s Statoil (NYSE:STO) was among the potential buyers contacted by Whiting.

Crude oil prices have been cut roughly in half since the summer, leading to increased mergers and acquisitions among U.S. energy companies looking to boost revenue and streamline expenses.

Read More At Investor’s Business Daily: http://news.investors.com/business/031315-743336-whiting-petroleum-wants-pieces-sold-off.htm#ixzz3UJ6NgNEW

Rockpick Note:  Whiting is also operating in the Niobrara Play

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First Casualties of Low Oil Price – Whiting Petroleum Offers Itself For Sale

'Whiting_Petroleum_Corporation_LogoDenver’s Whiting Petroleum begins search for a buyer
Mar 9, 2015 – Staff – Denver Business Journal

Denver’s Whiting Petroleum Corp. is looking for a buyer again, several years after it last tried that approach.

The move comes three months after Whiting (NYSE: WLL) bought another Denver energy company, Kodiak Oil & Gas Corp., creating the largest crude-oil producer in the bountiful Bakken shale region of the northern Great Plains. The combined company has a market cap of about $6.2 billion.

Citing people familiar with the matter, The Wall Street Journal reported Whiting (NYSE: WLL) is taking the step because the falling price of crude oil has been hurting the oil and gas producer, with revenue and share price both down.

Continue reading at The Denver Business Journal

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Nine big Colorado oil, gas drillers reel in spending, steady production

Picture of ConocoPhillips Drill Rig drilling in the Niobrara Play - Image Credit ConocoPhillps

Picture of ConocoPhillips Drill Rig drilling in the Niobrara Play – Image Credit ConocoPhillps

By Mark Jaffe – The Denver Post – March 8, 2015

After a year in which dollars and oil from drilling rigs flowed freely into Colorado, the nine major drillers on the Front Range are slashing 2015 spending by 30 percent, about $2 billion.

The number of rigs running has already dropped by a third in five months to 44 at the end of February, according to the oil field services company Baker Hughes.

The cuts come as the price of U.S. oil on the spot market has plummeted to $49.61 a barrel from $107.26 in June.

So far, the cutbacks haven’t had a severe impact on the state or on Weld County, the heart of Colorado oil country, partly the result of a diversified economy and continued big-dollar commitments by operators — even after the cuts.

“Hotels and restaurants still look to be full,” said Eric Berglund, CEO of Greeley-based Upstate Colorado Economic Development. “Beyond drilling, there is a large oil and gas industry presence here.”

There are thousands of existing wells that still need to be serviced, pipelines are being built, and gas processing and water recycling plants need employees, Berglund said.

The cuts in spending are returning the industry to about what it spent in 2013, he said.

“We haven’t seen any uptick in unemployment claims in the oil and gas sector,” said Bill Thoennes, a spokesman for the Colorado Department of Labor. “This may be something coming down the road, but we haven’t seen it yet.”

Continue reading story at The Denver Post

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Special Discount Offer for Niobrara News Readers – DUG Bakken and Niobrara Energy Conference

DUG_PermianBasin and more logosSpecial Discount Offer for Niobrara News Subscribers

The DUG Bakken and Niobrara conference and exhibition is the #1 unconventional resources event for western oil and gas producers. This 3-day event, scheduled March 31 – April 2 at the Colorado Convention Center in Denver, will unite more than 2,500 oil and gas professionals, 25 executive-level speakers and 200 exhibitors. Will you be among them? Register online at DUGBakken.com today!

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*Discount valid for Conference & Exhibition passes only. Not valid for exhibit-hall-only passes. New registrations only; not valid for refunds.

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Colorado smashes record for oil production

Colorado Oil and Gas Commission

Colorado Oil and Gas Commission

 – Reporter-Denver Business Journal – March 4, 2015

Colorado posted a new record for oil production in 2014, with more than 82.8 million barrels of crude oil pumped from the ground — about 85 percent of it from Weld County oil and natural gas wells, according to a Denver Business Journal analysis of figures posted on the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission (COGCC) website.

The state, along with the nation, has ridden a boom in oil development and production in the last few years. But experts say they don’t know if the boom will continue, as the price of oil in the United States has slid from last summer’s highs of more than $100 per barrel to close at $51.53 per barrel Wednesday in trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

And while the unofficial figures on the COGCC website are high, Colorado’s final figure for 2014 is expected to edge even higher in coming weeks as production reports are finalized and filed with the state.

The 2014 figure of 82.8 million barrels is 27 percent higher than the 65.3 million barrels the state produced in 2013 — a number that topped the previous year’s production levels and also smashed what had been the state’s all-time high production figure set in the 1950s.

Matt Lepore, the director of the COGCC, said Wednesday he was surprised by the 2014 production level.

“I did not think we would see a 20 percent increase, year over year, and we are well beyond that,” he said

Continue reading story at The Denver Business Journal

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Colorado spared major spending cuts by Anadarko Petroleum

Anadarko_logo – Reporter – Denver Business Journal

Anadarko Petroleum Corp. said Tuesday it will cut its 2015 capital spending budget by about 33 percent from last year, to between $5.4 billion and $5.8 billion, but cutbacks in Colorado will be less severe than other areas.

Anadarko (NYSE: APC), which has oil and gas operations around the world, spent about $9.3 billion companywide on capital expenditures last year.

The company, based in The Woodlands, Texas, is one of the biggest oil and gas companies working in Colorado’s Denver-Julesburg Basin north and east of Denver.

Anadarko said it plans to cut the number of drilling rigs it operates in the United States by 40 percent and postpone completing about 125 new onshore wells.

The company said it planned to spend about 55 percent of its budget on “short cash cycle” projects, such as Colorado’s Wattenberg field, part of the Denver-Julesburg Basin.

“The Wattenberg continues to be one of the more attractive assets in our portfolio,” Chuck Meloy, Anadarko’s executive vice president for its U.S. onshore exploration and production efforts, said Tuesday in a conference call with analysts.

Continue reading story at The Denver Business Journal

 

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US running out of room to store oil; price collapse next?

Oil Tank Battery in Weld County Colorado with protective liner

Oil Tank Battery in Weld County

By JONATHAN FAHEY – Associated Press – NEW YORK (AP) — The U.S. has so much crude that it is running out of places to put it, and that could drive oil and gasoline prices even lower in the coming months.

For the past seven weeks, the United States has been producing and importing an average of 1 million more barrels of oil every day than it is consuming. That extra crude is flowing into storage tanks, especially at the country’s main trading hub in Cushing, Oklahoma, pushing U.S. supplies to their highest point in at least 80 years, the Energy Department reported last week.

If this keeps up, storage tanks could approach their operational limits, known in the industry as “tank tops,” by mid-April and send the price of crude — and probably gasoline, too — plummeting.

“The fact of the matter is we are running out of storage capacity in the U.S.,” Ed Morse, head of commodities research at Citibank, said at a recent symposium at the Council on Foreign Relations in New York.

Morse has suggested oil could fall all the way to $20 a barrel from the current $50. At that rock-bottom price, oil companies, faced with mounting losses, would stop pumping oil until the glut eased. Gasoline prices would fall along with crude, though lower refinery production, because of seasonal factors and unexpected outages, could prevent a sharp decline.

Continue reading story at Yahoo News

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Whiting Petroleum to run 3 rigs in Niobrara after 50% Capex reduction for 2015

'Whiting_Petroleum_Corporation_LogoFebruary 26, 2015 – At the Q4 2014 Whiting Petroleum Corp. Earnings Conference Call, the company announced a Q4 2014 Production of 131,260 BOE/d Up 13% Over Q3 2014, Proved Reserves to a Record 780.3 MMBOE an Increase of 78% and a $2.0 Billion 2015 Capex Budget, a 50% Decrease from Whiting+Kodiak 2014 Capex.

Press Release Highlights: James J. Volker, Whiting’s Chairman, President and CEO, when commenting about the companies activities in the Niobrara said that “In our Redtail area in Weld County, Colorado, results have been strong in the Niobrara “C” zone and Codell/Fort Hays formations with 120-day average rates of approximately 400 BOE/d. We believe returns could rival our Niobrara “A” and “B” drilling and after year-end 2014 we added 3,162 gross Niobrara “C” and Codell/Fort Hays locations to our potential drilling inventory. Given our high quality asset base, we are confident in our ability to navigate the current pricing environment.”

Mr Volker continued, “We are currently running 19 rigs, 16 in the Bakken/Three Forks and 3 in the Niobrara at Redtail. Our rig count will go to 13 rigs by mid-year, 10 in the Bakken/Three Forks and 3 in the Niobrara, down from 25 rigs for the combined companies in 2014. We will focus our operations on our highest rate-of-return properties. At the same time, we are seeing lower completed well costs through service company price reductions and technology applications. We expect our 2015 completed well cost in the Bakken/Three Forks to average $7 million, down from $8.5 million in 2014. We expect our 2015 Redtail Niobrara well cost to be $5.0 million.”

Read the full Whiting Petroleum Q4 2014 Press Release

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