ENERGY STOCKS: Oil and natural gas producers move into positive territory

A profit miss by Schlumberger weighed on oil services shares Friday as earlier gains gave way to mixed trading throughout the energy sector to finish out a punishing week. Energy stocks wavered after posting bruising losses in previous sessions on weakness in the overall markets amid a dimmer economic outlook for the U.S.

The Philadelphia Oil Service Index subtracted about 1% to close at 261, down 11% from its week-ago close of 292. Schlumberger (SLB:79.52, -2.99, -3.6%) led decliners in the oil service gauge as it gave up 3.6% to $79.52 after posting a 22% earnings jump. Halliburton (HAL:32.40, -0.90, -2.7%) dipped 2.7% to $32.40. Smith International (SII:58.61, -1.89, -3.1%) subtracted 3% to $58.61. Weatherford (WFT:59.20, -1.72, -2.8%) dropped 2.8% to $59.20. BJ Services (BJS:21.23, -0.78, -3.5%) gave up 3.5% to $21.23. The Philadelphia Oil Service Index has now fallen 16% from its all-time high close of 312.2 on Jan. 3. In 2007, the gauge gained 50%, rising to 301.6 from 200.

The Amex Oil Index (XOI1,348.47, +12.83, +1.0%) rose 1% to 1,348, about 8% below its week-ago close of 1,464. Hess Corp. (HES:85.48, +2.31, +2.8%) rose 2.8% to $85.48 as a leading gainer in the group. Sunoco (SUN:59.68, +2.17, +3.8%) advanced nearly 4% to close at $59.68. ConocoPhillips (COP:72.89, -0.59, -0.8%) and Marathon Oil (MRO:47.49, -0.24, -0.5%) each fell about 1%.

The Amex Natural Gas Index (XNG:527.78, -0.66, -0.1%) gave back earlier gains and fell fractionally to 528, down 8% from its week-ago close of 575. Crude prices wavered during the session but ended 44 cents higher at $90.57a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

Among movers, Cameron International (CAM:45.58, +0.95, +2.1%) advanced 1.3% to $45.22 after the oil and gas drilling products giant was tapped to join the S&P 500. It'll move into the stories index after the close of trading on Monday. St. Mary Land & Exploration (SM:34.42, +0.42, +1.2%) rose 2% to $45.58 after SunTrust Robinson Humphrey upgraded both exploration and production firms to buy from neutral.

Cos. (WMB:31.77, +0.04, +0.1%) rose 4 cents to $31.77 after the energy firm successfully floated an initial public offering of Williams Pipeline LP (WPZ:36.98, -0.50, -1.3%) , which represents a chunk of its natural gas transmission business in the Northwestern U.S.

By Steve Gelsi
Read more | Digg story

No comments: