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by Stockwatch Business Reporter
West Texas Intermediate crude for July delivery lost 52 cents to $109.77 on the New York Merc, while Brent for July added 14 cents to $113.56 (all figures in this para U.S.). Western Canadian Select traded at a discount of $14.55 to WTI, unchanged. Natural gas for June added six cents to $8.80. The TSX energy index added 6.36 points to close at 259.70.
Oil sands producer Cenovus Energy Inc. (CVE) added 34 cents to $27.75 on 10.4 million shares. Chief executive officer Alex Pourbaix rang in the shortened work week with a lengthy interview published this morning in The Globe and Mail's Report on Business Magazine. He shared his thoughts on -- as the magazine paraphrased it -- his "mission [of] satisfying the world's appetite for oil while closing in on net zero."
Most of his thoughts were already familiar to shareholders. Mr. Pourbaix went over everything from Cenovus's takeover of Husky Energy (a multibillion-dollar megadeal in early 2021) to the "moonshot challenge of our age" (reaching net zero emissions by 2050). The Husky deal added pressure to Cenovus's balance sheet, but Mr. Pourbaix said this is on the mend. Just last month, he emphasized, Cenovus tripled its quarterly dividend to 10.5 cents from 3.5 cents, for a yield of 1.5 per cent. (This is still one of the smallest payouts among major oil sands producers.) Mr. Pourbaix also promoted Cenovus's involvement in the Oil Sands Pathways to Net Zero Alliance, which in his view is setting some "very, very aggressive" environmental targets. Some critics disagree, but in Mr. Pourbaix's tactfully expressed view, some critics have "a view that really underestimates the challenges," both on the ground and in the broader Canadian economy.
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