for Shale Oil Producers
The oil industry continues to struggle despite prices rising and expectations for strong earnings reports. Energy stocks in the S&P 500 declined by 6.6 percent in the first quarter.
The divergence in shale forecasts stems from differences over macroeconomic assumptions, price expectations, the supply chain outlook, and productivity projections.
The oil majors are expected to post $80 billion in organic free cash flow in 2018, but spending is expected to be modest.
Under the border-adjustment tax, U.S. oil would be exempted from taxes if it is exported abroad, making it much more competitive. The tax, however, will have difficulty passing in Congress since it would also likely raise pump prices.
While this past weekend’s earthquake in Oklahoma will not likely bring drilling to a halt, it could usher in a new era of heightened oversight on fracking in a state that has seen increasing investment from shale companies in recent years.
Hedge fund sentiment in the oil markets has turned considerably bearish as of late. While it may be premature to say prices have already peaked for the year, a sustained bull run for the rest of 2016 appears less and less likely.
Two major executives this past week gave differing views on this year's election. Continental's Harold Hamm spoke at the RNC in favor of Donald Trump, while Pioneer's CEO noted how the industry has performed better under Democratic administrations.
With prices having rallied and with expectations for a stronger market next year, will drilled but uncompleted wells (DUCs) be able to stabilize U.S. shale output or bring about another wave of supply online?
The IMF has estimated that oil exporting nations in the Middle East and North Africa as a whole will see their current account balances drop from a collective 8.9 percent of GDP surplus last year to a 4.3 percent of GDP deficit in 2016.