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by Stockwatch Business Reporter
West Texas Intermediate crude for September delivery lost $1.06 to $53.63 on the New York Merc, while Brent for October lost 87 cents to $58.94 (all figures in this para U.S.). Western Canadian Select traded at a discount of $12.46 to WTI, unchanged. Natural gas for September added four cents to $2.11. The TSX energy index lost 3.34 points to close at 124.84.
Li Ka-shing's Husky Energy Inc. (HSE) lost 42 cents to $9.21 on 6.58 million shares, continuing its steady march below $10, where it has not traded since 2003. A fortnight ago it was worth around $11.50, but it dipped below $10 on July 29, three trading days after it released its second quarter financials on July 25. The financials were a decided disappointment. Production averaged 268,000 barrels of oil equivalent a day, down from 285,000 barrels a day in the first quarter (and well below Husky's full-year guidance of 290,000 to 305,000 barrels a day), while cash flow of 80 cents a share was sharply below analysts' predictions of 96 cents a share. President and chief executive officer Rob Peabody stayed upbeat. "We remain on track with the plan we outlined at our recent investor day," he declared, referring to Husky's May 28 presentation in Toronto, where the company released a five-year outlook while touting its "general operational excellence." The stock has since fallen from about $12.75. Mr. Peabody is taking the dip as a buying opportunity. Last week, he bought 10,000 shares at $10.01, boosting his holdings to 202,924 of Husky's one billion shares.
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