Top Energy Stocks
Energy stocks were edging lower this afternoon, with the NYSE Energy Sector Index falling 0.4%, while shares of energy companies in the S&P 500 were down 0.3% as a group. West Texas Intermediate crude oil for February delivery was rising 14 cents to $46.02 per barrel at the New York Mercantile Exchange, while the global benchmark Brent crude February contract was declining 3 cents to $54.32 per barrel. January natural gas futures were 22 cents higher at $3.80 per 1 million BTU. Among energy-related ETFs, the United States Oil fund was falling about 0.3%, while United States Natural Gas was posting a 1.7% advance. The Philadelphia Oil Service Sector index was up 0.3%.
Among energy stocks moving on news:
(-) Ultra Petroleum ( UPL ) spiked 19% out of the gate, only to fall 2.7% in recent trading, after saying it expects to close on transactions before the end of the year that will reduce long-term debt at the oil and natural producer by at least $235 million.
(-) Vermilion Energy ( VET ) declined 1.5% on Friday after the Canadian exploration and production company completed its acquisition of Shell E&P Ireland Ltd as well as a 1.5% working interest in the Corrib natural gas project in Ireland from the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board.
(+) Marathon Oil Corp ( MRO ) was slightly higher Friday afternoon after Citigroup raised its investment recommendation on the energy major's shares to buy from neutal.
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