Top Energy Stocks
Energy stocks extended their mid-day rise this afternoon, with the NYSE Energy Sector Index climbing nearly 1.2% while the shares of energy companies in the S&P 500 also were up almost 1.4% as a group. West Texas Intermediate crude oil for November delivery settled 4 cents lower at $52.59 per barrel, reversing an earlier gain, while the global benchmark Brent crude December contract advanced 12 cents to $58.36 per barrel. November natural gas futures fell 5 cents to $2.23 per 1 million BTU.
In industry news:
US crude oil inventories grew for a fourth week in a row, rising by 2.9 million barrels over the prior week to 425.6 million barrels during the seven days ended Oct. 4, according to data released Wednesday by the Energy Information Administration. Industry experts polled by S&P Global Platts had been expecting a 2.4 million-barrel increase while the American Petroleum Institute late Tuesday reportedly said crude supplies climbed by 4.1 million barrels over the same span last week. US refineries were operating at 85.7% of their capacity, down from 86.4% during the prior week.
Among energy stocks moving on news:
(-) International Seaways (INSW) was down 1% shortly before Wednesday's closing bell, giving back an early 4.4% gain to an all-time high of $25.29 a share that followed it late Tuesday saying it was prepaying $100 million of the $567.9 million owed under its 2017 term loan facility, reducing its yearly interest costs by around $8.2 million. The company is using the proceeds from recent vessel sales and the $123 million sale of a 49.9% equity stake in a liquefied natural gas tanker joint venture announced Monday to fund the transaction, which also includes a 1% prepayment fee.
In other sector news:
(+) TechnipFMC (FTI) rose over 1% after oilfield-services company said its JFT consortium with US builder Fluor (FLR) and its Japanese counterpart JGC Corp has been hired by Mozambique Rovuma Venture to provide engineering, procurement and construction service for the African company's onshore liquefied natural gas project. Financial terms of the contract were not disclosed.
(+) Diamondback Energy (FANG) was 1% higher in late trade. Roth Capital Tuesday trimmed its price target for the oil and natural gas producer by $3 to $147 a share but also reiterating its buy rating for the company's stock.
(-) Frontline Ltd (FRO) was sinking 1% this afternoon, reversing an early 5% advance that followed the crude oil tanker company Wednesday saying it has completed a $100 million equity distribution agreement with Morgan Stanley (MS), which sold over 11 million of the company's shares since July 2018 through a series of broker transactions. Frontline has been using the net proceeds from the stock sale to fund growth opportunities and other general corporate purposes.
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