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by Stockwatch Business Reporter
West Texas Intermediate crude for July delivery lost $1.73 to $44.73 on the New York Merc, its first time below $45 since last November, while Brent for August lost $1.72 to $47.00 (all figures in this para U.S.). The International Energy Agency (IEA) predicted today that increases in oil supply will outstrip increases in oil demand during 2018 as a result of rising production in the United States and other non-OPEC countries. This was the IEA's first outlook for 2018 and "makes sobering reading for those producers looking to restrain supply," according to the report. Western Canadian Select traded at a discount of $10.35 to WTI ($34.38), unchanged. Natural gas for July lost four cents to $2.93. The TSX energy index lost 7.21 points to close at 176.87.
Alberta gas producer Bellatrix Exploration Ltd. (BXE) lost one cent to 84 cents on 613,500 shares, after agreeing to sell its non-core Strachan Cardium assets for $34.5-million. The assets are currently producing about 1,750 barrels of oil equivalent a day. They were producing about 2,200 barrels a day in 2016 and 3,200 barrels a day in 2015, according to SEDAR, but then Bellatrix started ignoring them in favour of its Spirit River assets. The last time it drilled a Cardium well at Strachan was in 2014. It thus came as no surprise when president and chief executive officer Brent Eshleman said during a conference call last month that Bellatrix was "actively marketing" the Strachan assets. He also said the process might take months. Evidently it was speedier than expected.
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