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by Stockwatch Business Reporter
West Texas Intermediate crude for June delivery added 44 cents to $16.954 on the New York Merc -- a quiet end to what was otherwise the wildest trading week in its history, which saw it trading as low as negative $40.32 on Monday -- while Brent for June added 11 cents to $21.44 (all figures in this para U.S.). Western Canadian Select traded at a discount of $9.50 to WTI, down from a discount of $9.25. Natural gas for May lost seven cents to $1.75. The TSX energy index lost a fraction to close at 66.50.
David Wilson's B.C. and Alberta Montney-focused Kelt Exploration Ltd. (KEL) lost five cents to $1.19 on 2.13 million shares, after withdrawing what was left of its 2020 guidance. This had already seen some steep cuts: On March 27, Kelt lowered its proposed budget to $145-million from $225-million, and on April 9, it said it was suspending all remaining drilling and completion operations until commodity prices improved.
All of this made for a subdued atmosphere at Kelt's annual general meeting on Wednesday. Kelt followed up the AGM with an announcement yesterday evening, which not only withdrew the 2020 guidance, but indicated that simply halting drilling is not enough and that shut-ins are now on the way. "Kelt is taking measures to reduce production levels to protect against selling oil at negative margins," said the company. More encouragingly, Kelt noted that it has added to its production hedges for 2020, and has also received a one-month extension on its credit facility review to May 31 from April 30. (The $350-million facility was $300-million drawn as of Dec. 31.) The extension will give both Kelt and its bankers extra time to await details of federal credit programs.
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