The oil price spread between West Texas Intermediate and Brent is tightening again.
As of this morning, this spread stood at 7.2% of the WTI rate (the more accurate way to register its impact in the U.S. market).
And as this oil price spread continues to narrow, it promises to create some direct consequences for energy investors.
Here's what's behind it, and what investors need to know moving forward...
Best Oil Stocks to Buy as U.S. Jumps to World's Top Oil Producer
It's time to look at oil stocks to buy as the United States gets ready to surpass the world's biggest oil producers.
Earlier this month, the International Energy Agency (IEA) reported that the United States will jump past both Russia and Saudi Arabia as the world's top oil producer by 2015.To continue reading, please click here...
Another Shoe Has Dropped… and It's a Big One
I wasn't more than 30 minutes outside of D.C. the other night before my cell phone started ringing.
The calls involved breaking new developments overseas that promise to have a big impact on the global energy markets. They concerned a major global energy situation that is likely to create a domino effect that will have consequences for U.S. domestic policy.To continue reading, please click here...
The Next Best Investments in Oil Come From This Texas Sweet Spot
As I wrote up this analysis of the best investments in oil, a familiar saying came to mind: "Everything old is new again."
A truer statement could not be said about the Permian Basin, which is a geological formation roughly 300 miles long and 250 miles across that stretches across west Texas and eastern New Mexico.To continue reading, please click here...
It's Time to Climb Aboard the Oil-by-Rail Boom
Rail transit is about to make you some big money...in oil.
That's why I'll be headed to Dallas in late August and Calgary mid-September for extensive meetings with all of the key players.
I can promise you, that in a hurry this is going to get a lot bigger.
As it happens, I'll be providing all of the details for average investors to profit from this monumental change.
A Big Time Squeeze for Refineries is About to Begin
After banking some very hefty profits for Energy Advantage and Energy Inner Circle subscribers on refining stocks earlier this year, the entire sector now is about to land "between a rock and a hard place."
Once a high-flying place for investors to earn substantial profits, refiners have been under pressure for the last two months. But that's actually just the beginning of what's to come.To continue reading, please click here...
Why the Fed's QE Policy is Bullish for Oil Prices
Recently, I talked about how crude was beginning to occupy a position as a store of market value ("Why Oil Is Becoming the New 'Gold Standard," May 20, 2013). The development has been a direct consequence of the flight from holding gold.
That flight may be tapering and a new floor established for the next major spike by the metal.
The problem is there is no agreement on which direction that move will be...
These days, a sudden improvement in gold prices may only extend as far as hedge funds and institutional investors covering shorts.
Nonetheless, there is an interesting parallel developing between the plight of gold and crude oil prices.To continue reading, please click here…
These Oil Stocks Are the Big Winners in This Year's "Summer Pop"
I have been "in the field" for the past several days and will be back in circulation later this week. But I wanted to send you a note on what's been taking place recently.
The last two trading sessions have seen a spike in oil stocks. The rise has been focused on companies that provide services to early-stage field development, as well as for crude production.
Now, we have witnessed a similar "summer pop" in each of the past three years. It tends to signal a rise in expected medium-term demand for both crude oil and oil products.
However this time around, the improvement isn't reflected in companies across the board, but rather in those emphasizing geographically specific field plays.To continue reading, please click here...
How to Invest in Oil's Final Frontier: The Arctic
Investors searching for how to invest in oil in 2013 should be focused on these latest developments from the Arctic.
In fact, countries are racing to get a piece of what could be the final frontier for oil...
As ice melts in the Arctic region, oil and gas trapped beneath the water becomes more accessible.
Money Morning Global Energy Strategist Dr. Kent Moors recently explained to Money Morning members about the search for Arctic oil and gas.
He spoke about the years-in-the-making U.S. Geological Survey's Circum-Arctic Resource Appraisal. The study found that 84% of the total undiscovered oil and gas left on the planet is located above the Arctic Circle, mainly offshore and in three huge basins that lie under shallow seas.Read More...
- Why Oil Is the New "Gold Standard" As gold loses some of its luster, Dr. Kent Moors explains why crude oil has become a much better reflection of stored market value. Read more... Read More...
Oil Price Manipulation Awakens Libor, Enron Ghosts
Last July, we warned you that oil prices could potentially be manipulated in similar fashion to the London Interbank Offered Rate (Libor), and now a recent raid of major oil companies highlights this growing danger to the $3.4 trillion-a-year crude market.
The European Commission last week stormed the offices of Royal Dutch Shell PLC (NYSE ADR: RDS.A, RDS.B), BP PLC ( NYSE ADR: BP), and Statoil ASA (NYSE ADR: STO) as part of the ongoing investigation to find out whether companies are manipulating oil prices and, if so, how long it has been going on and the possible ramifications.
"The commission has concerns that the companies may have colluded in reporting distorted prices to a price reporting agency (PRA) to manipulate the published prices for a number of oil and biofuel products," the EC said in a statement.
Besides major oil companies, big banks are active in the energy market and would likely benefit from any manipulation, David Frenk, director of research at the financial reform group Better Markets and a former commodities analyst, told CNN.
The ordeal has brought back memories not only of last year's Libor scandal but also of the actions taken 12 years ago by Enron to control energy prices.Read More...
- How to Hedge Oil Prices in Volatile Markets The prospects are very good for the oil prices. But the markets promise to be volatile. Here's the best way to build an "oil insurance plan." Read more... Read More...
Frack or Fail: Is It Time For California's Liberals to Go?
California is in a LOT of trouble financially. Cities are going under and the state can't balance its budget. It also has almost half a trillion in state pensions to fund and revenue is drying up.
But there is one way out: Tap the largest oil and gas play in the Lower 48.
The question is, whether this left leaning state crowded with special interests like the Sierra Club will actually let oil services companies begin to start fracking on state land.
In our inaugural Money Morning Fight Club brawl, Frank Marchant and Garrett Baldwin square off on this contentious issue. The best part is we are asking you to turn in your scorecard and pick the winner at the end.
So let's get ready to rumble...
- Buy, Sell or Hold: Strong Oil Prices Make Apache Corp. a Good Bet Apache Corp. (NYSE: APA) is not your average oil company. Even with oil prices still comfortably in the $90.00 range, Apache shares recently fell below their 52-week lows. In fact, since April 2011 Apache shares are down by 44%. But with a strong balance sheet and healthy sales forecasts, this company is doing all the right things. Read More...
What's Keeping Oil Prices Down – for Now, at Least
Sequestration, production concerns in China and the political mess in Italy have combined to keep oil prices down, says Money Morning Global Energy Strategist Dr. Kent Moors.
Speaking on CNBC, Moors said the oil market is now "slightly oversold."
Moors said increased demand and less refinery capacity being used could increase the oil crack spread in the United States, leading to higher energy prices even if oil prices fall.
Asked why energy prices are so high, Moors said there are six or seven major factors.
"The bottom line," he said, "is we have to stop looking at Western Europe and North America when we talk about oil demand because oil demand is being driven essentially worldwide by completely different regions."
Among them, Moors said, is West Africa, where oil demand is spiking.
Watch the accompanying video to hear Moors talk more about global oil prices and how they will affect you. Read More...
Australia Shale Oil Discovery Continues the Country's "Lucky" Streak
Investors are well aware of the shale oil revolution in the United States. But the "revolution" does not end here; it is spreading globally to countries as diverse as China and Poland.
There is one country in particular though that may experience circumstances similar to the United States, if not greater.
I'm talking about Australia, which has often been called "The Lucky Country." That description was first penned in 1964 by Donald Horne and he actually meant it negatively at the time.
But in recent decades, the term has been given a positive spin thanks to Australia's abundance of natural resources and its geographical location near the world's biggest consumer of commodities - China.
And Australia may have struck luck again thanks to the recent announcement of a massive shale oil discovery.Read More...