Energy Stocks, Crude Oil Fall after Norway Intervenes to Avert Lockout


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Energy stocks are mostly lower this afternoon with the S&P Energy Index down 0.7% in mid-day trade.

In industry news, oil futures fell after the Norwegian government moved to avert an lockout of petroleum workers by their employers early today, sending the two sides into arbitration to resolve their differences.

West Texas Intermediate crude for August delivery is down nearly 1%, falling 77 cents to $85.22 a barrel in NYMEX trading. Overseas, August Brent is down $1.55 at $98.77 a barrel in ICE European trading.

The lockout had been set to begin at midnight today in response to a pay strike by offshore workers over pension terms. Soon after the announcement, Statoil ASA ( STO ) said it is preparing to resume production at affected installations "as quickly as possible," with the state-run oil major adding it expects to return to full production within a week.

STO last week estimated the job action would take about 1.2 million barrels a day out of production, costing the firm nearly $87 million daily during its duration. STO ADRs have gained about 1%.

Shares of other producers operating on the Norwegian offshore shelf were mixed, with Anadarko Petroleum ( APC ) losing earlier gains and now down 1%. Phillips 66 ( PSX ) was down slightly.

In other sector news,

(+) GEVO, (+0.7% from near year lows) Said it could successfully ferment isobutanol in commercial quantities, isolate product and move it into tanks and railcars.

(-) JRCC, (-20%) Hardest hit among coal producers following bankruptcy of Patriot Coal yesterday. BTU, ANR, ACI also trading up to 4% lower.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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This article appears in: Investing , Commodities
More Headlines for: APC , PSX , STO

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