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by Stockwatch Business Reporter
West Texas Intermediate crude for December delivery added 36 cents to $57.17 on the New York Merc, while Brent for January added 44 cents to $63.93 (all figures in this para U.S.). Western Canadian Select traded at a discount of $14.25 to WTI ($42.92), unchanged. Natural gas for December added two cents to $3.20. The TSX energy index added a fraction to close at 202.75.
Alberta gas producer Peyto Exploration & Development Corp. (PEY) fell to an intraday low of $17.83 in the first 20 minutes of trading, then rose and ended the day up one cent to $18.86 on 4.17 million shares. The early drop likely came from investors who did not expect Peyto to maintain its dividend, seemingly at the expense of production. Peyto pays a monthly dividend of 11 cents, representing a yield of 7 per cent. About a year ago, the yield was a more comfortable 3.7 per cent, as the stock traded around $35. Peyto has since suffered from "unprecedented volatility," as president and CEO Darren Gee described it, with AECO gas prices (the benchmark in Alberta) sometimes going negative. On days such as those, Peyto had to shut in up to 36,000 barrels of oil equivalent a day. Nevertheless, Peyto produced 101,951 barrels a day in Q3 2017, up from 96,365 barrels a day in Q3 2016. It is producing 115,000 barrels a day now.
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