Analysis

  • Analysis: Misguided Output Forecasts Harm Canadian Oilpatch

    The Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers (CAPP) released the 2018 edition of its Crude Oil Forecast, Markets and Transportation report last month. It is a very useful report in some ways, but unfortunately the crude forecasts in these reports have long suffered from myopia.

    July 16, 2018, 7:58 AM MDT

  • Analysis: Is The ‘Shale Revolution’ Working For Oil?

    Ten plus years ago, we heard about the “Shale Revolution” — the realization that horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing were changing the face of the oil industry, unleashing huge new supplies of gas and oil from low-permeability (shale and tight) reservoirs. 

    July 9, 2018, 6 AM MDT

  • Analysis: Crude Oil Prices To The Stratosphere?

    There is a damned good reason international benchmark crude prices have been rocketing higher since so-called OPEC+ —  the 14 OPEC members and 10 non-OPEC countries restricting crude production since the beginning of 2017 —  agreed to raise output on June 22: a potential supply crunch late this year or early next year due to yet another misguided policy by U.S. President Donald Trump.

    July 3, 2018, 9:04 AM MDT

  • Analysis: Throw Mexico, Not Oil Industry, Under Trump Trade Bus

    There may be more prominent targets in U.S. President Donald Trump’s multi-front trade war, such as China and the European Union, but Canada and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau have recently been the primary recipients of Trump administration vitriol.  

    June 25, 2018, 7 AM MDT

  • Analysis: Canadian Oilsands Producers Continue To Keep Spending Levels Below Cash Flow

    Analysis by CanOils sheds interesting new light on the overall appetite for capital investment among Canadian producers — in the era before and after the oil price downturn — with a subset of major oilsands operators continuing to restrain investment into major new projects due to weaker Canadian oil prices caused by a lack of market access.

    June 15, 2018, 7:01 AM MDT

  • Analysis: Pipeline Aside, Here’s What The Oil And Gas Industry Really Needs To Focus On

    Whether it is limited pipeline infrastructure, price volatility or regulatory pressures, Canadian oil and gas companies continue to face a number of challenges that make it more difficult to operate in today’s environment.

    June 1, 2018, 8:25 AM MDT

  • Analysis: Alberta’s Export Ban A Bad Idea

    It was an interesting weekend.

    April 24, 2018, 7:59 AM MDT

  • Analysis: Alberta Should Let Feds Lead On TMX Ultimatum

    The CEO of Kinder Morgan Steve Kean said investment in the Trans Mountain oil pipeline expansion project (TMX) “may be untenable for a private party to undertake” during his company’s first quarter earnings call on April 18.

    April 20, 2018, 10:18 AM MDT

  • Analysis: Light/Heavy Spread Expected To Average US$15-$20 For 2018

    After several months of consternation, Canadian light-heavy crude oil price spreads look like they have begun to more convincingly contract.

    April 18, 2018, 6 AM MDT

  • Analysis: How Do Renewables Stack Up With Natural Gas?

    It is a new narrative. Electrons generated from wind and solar are the cheapest available.  Renewable energy is undergoing a remarkable fall in costs that will displace all other systems, including natural gas. The latter claim is too early to call.

    April 18, 2018, 6:29 AM MDT

  • Analysis: Crude Prices To Strengthen Through Next Year

    International benchmark crude prices played out basically as expected by Geopolitics Central (GPC) in the first quarter of the year, with a few interesting twists on the market fundamentals front and growing signs of ongoing Russia-OPEC co-operation encouraging us to maintain our current short-term outlook.

    April 9, 2018, 6 AM MDT

  • Analysis: A Trade War Boon for Canadian Oil Industry?

    When I’m wrong, I’m wrong.

    March 22, 2018, 9:29 AM MDT

  • Analysis: The Future Is Less About Oil Prices Than Innovation

    Last week, 4,500 people from the global energy industry congregated in Houston, Texas for the annual IHS Markit CERAWeek conference. In every conference room and meeting location, conference attendees buzzed with enthusiastic conversation about change. Here are the major themes that dominated the discussion.

    March 14, 2018, 3:30 AM MDT

  • Analysis: Time To Hitch Alberta To LTO Wagon

    It’s time for the Alberta government to think outside the box.

    March 12, 2018, 3:29 AM MDT

  • Analysis: The Future Of OPEC And Oil Prices

    The Organization of the Oil Exporting Countries (OPEC) was born in a time of plenty, prospered over a period of real or perceived scarcity, and will likely die in the distant future as the world shifts away from high-carbon energy resources.

    February 26, 2018, 3:47 AM MST

  • Analysis: A Modest Proposal To End Western Canada’s Railway Pinch

    A new Western Canadian oil pipeline pinch had been widely predicted for the fourth quarter of last year. The corresponding increase in regional oil price differentials was expected to be gradual and moderate, with Canadian National Railway (CN) and Canadian Pacific Railway (CP) coming to the rescue of oil shippers, just as they did earlier this decade.

    February 5, 2018, 6 AM MST

  • Sayer’s Outlook For 2018 M&A Activity

    In spite of prolonged low commodity prices, when considering only the total value of mergers and acquisitions (“M&A”) activity, 2017 was an above average year for M&A activity in the Canadian oil patch.  While the nature of transactions may change somewhat, even with the worst of the most recent oil price onslaught apparently behind us, Sayer Energy Advisors forecasts that there will be significantly less M&A activity, in total dollar value, in 2018 than there was in 2017.

    January 25, 2018, 6 AM MST

  • CGAI Series: Energy As A Service — Going Beyond Energy Supply

    As a major natural resource provider, Canada has approached its transition to a low-carbon economy very much in the light of its energy production and supply. Its discussion about climate change has been dominated by worries about pipelines, oilsands, shale gas and uranium production without much thought about the other side of energy: usage and consumption.

    January 23, 2018, 6 AM MST

  • Analysis: Top Geopolitical Hotspots For Crude Oil Through 2019

    As discussed in our last article — Politics to Continue to Drive Crude Prices Through 2019 — Geopolitics Central (GPC) is bullish on WTI crude prices through 2019 partly because we expect a significant rebound in politically-inspired oil production outages. Rising tensions between Saudi Arabia and Iran should provide a solid base of geopolitical uncertainty, but as of now we do not expect it to lead to a hot war and a massive supply disruption over this period. But there are many more potential sources of disruption to supply, albeit significantly less dramatic, the four most likely ones from our perspective are Iran (new economic sanctions), Libya (election-related violence), Nigeria (militancy in Niger Delta region), and Venezuela (end game).

    January 22, 2018, 6 AM MST

  • Analysis: AECO Natural Gas — Fifty Per Cent Discounts Don’t Last Forever

    This week’s ARC SnapChart plots the dramatic decline in AECO futures pricing over the past six months. The average futures price from 2018 to 2021 has fallen from $C 2.36/GJ in July to $C 1.57/GJ today. At the current price, a molecule of natural gas in Alberta is trading at a 50 per cent markdown to Louisiana’s Henry Hub.

    January 17, 2018, 7:54 AM MST

  • Analysis: Politics To Continue To Drive Crude Prices Through 2019

    The jump in international benchmark crude prices in the fourth quarter of last year surprised most oil forecasters. Here at Geopolitics Central (GPC), we expected spot West Texas Intermediate (WTI) to rebound, having previously predicted the price to average US$62.50/bbl this year (DOB, Oct. 11, 2017) — but failed to see the speed in which prices would increase.

    January 8, 2018, 9:32 AM MST

  • Analysis: Revolutions Fell Big Trees – An Ode To Peak Oil Demand

    People around these parts don't much like those who say peak oil demand is inevitable. Can’t say that I blame them. The theory ain’t good for business in the short term  — although taking the appropriate actions now, assuming it is correct, could keep them from driving off a proverbial cliff in the more distant future. Funny thing, many of the people trying to debunk peak oil demand are the same ones who sold Peak Oil — on the supply side — like snake oil last decade. It's like these people just tell you folk what you want to hear, not what you need to hear.

    December 20, 2017, 6 AM MST

  • Analysis: Crude Reality: The End Of Oil Is A Good Ways Off

    China’s oil imports were up last week, with month-over-month imports increasing by 20 percent. This year, oil demand growth will register well above the 10 year average.

    December 13, 2017, 9:03 AM MST

  • Analysis: Sunny Days Ahead For Duvernay Shale Oil

    It may be early days for development of the Duvernay shale in Alberta, but it is increasingly looking like the next liquids-rich formation to take off in North America.

    December 11, 2017, 4:33 AM MST

  • CanOils Analysis: Upcoming In Situ Project Capital Intensity

    Since the oil price decline, in situ oilsands producers have been focused on reducing the capital cost of projects, particularly those that are waiting to come onstream. CanOils conducted an overview on 36 projects applied for over the last 15 years in order to discover how factors such as timing and market conditions were influencing capital intensity.

    November 29, 2017, 6 AM MST