15
Jan

Takeback Tuesday

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What a nice day yesterday was; a perfect start to expiration week. This morning energy futures are slightly lower from yesterday's closing levels but broad market weakness is once again rearing its ugly head as (C) chops its dividend and the market panics. Isn't cutting the dividend, taking every charge you can find, and gutting the rank and file how you begin the healing process? Will the Street never learn that as holders become sellers that the new holders will, in all likelihood in next month or so, hold a higher priced (C)? Oh well, another day, another panic. 

Commodity Watch

  • Crude Oil rallied $1.51 to close at $94.20 on Nigerian rebel attacks (including the bombing of a products tanker which MEND claims it received help from within the government), a falling dollar, bullish OPEC language, and cold weather. This morning crude is trading off $1 in the early session. Watch for the bears to come out of the closet today.1
  • Early Read On Oil Inventories (from the Bloomberg survey)
    • Crude: expected up 1.25 million barrels.
    • Distillate: up
  • Oh How We Miss A Fed Chairman We Can't Understand Watch: Commenting on whether the U.S. is already in a recession or not former Fed Chairman Alan Greenspan said to the Wall Street Journal that the odds are "not overwhelming but they are marginally in that direction". 
  • Nutbag Chavez Watch: Chavez claims Venezuela will have the largest booked reserves of any nation by 2009 jumping from 100 billion to a whopping 333 billion barrels over the next 2 years on the back of heavy sour crude bookings from the Orinoco belt. Zcomment: not if you keep nationalizing the assets of your partners.
  • Natural Gas: Gas rallied $0.14 to close at $8.35 on colder weather and a recovery in crude prices. This morning gas is trading down a nickel and although I still expect gas to have limited upside from present levels (maybe reaching just above mid 8's barring a serious cold snap) a recent cooling of the forecasts will be helpful in combating that string of approaching difficult storage comps.
  • Imports edged up 0.1 Bcfgpd to 9.7 Bcfgpd last week.
  • Weather for the next week of so and the National Weather Service is for once looking for colder than normal conditions for most of the U.S. in its 6 - 10 and 8-14 day forecasts.


2008 Sees A Rocky Start For Cracks. Surprising large builds in product inventories coupled with another big draw on crude stocks yielded another slump in regional crack spreads. Further expected builds in distillate stocks this auger for more of the same as I don't expect crude to simply fall out of bed even if inventories rise for the first time in 9 weeks as the survey above foretells. Happy to be slightly short the group gong into 4q reporting season and a laundry list of refining analysts have recently downgraded the group as well.

crack-spread-011108.jpg

 

Stocks We Care About Today:

(RIG) rig secured for 7 more months. Transocean's Prospect semi-sub was rented to Norwegian oil service company AGR Group for seven additional months for 70 million GBP. This works out to a shocking high day rate of about $650,00 per day, well above the $210,000 per day listed in (RIG)'s recent fleet update release. I suspect the rate may include more than just the 7 additional months but that's how the PR out of AGR reads. This is not stock moving news worthy but still, it may have added a little extra umph to yesterday's move as well as demonstrating the continued strong pricing environment presented to the deep water capable drillers.

(TLM) Announces Second Discovery Off Vietnam. The well (the Hai Su Den #1 or HSD1) is on trend with a prolific region for oil and gas discoveries 50 miles off the east coast in the same block (15-2/01) as their May 2007 discovery , the Hai Su Trang (HST1)well and a subsequent successful sidetrack appraisal well. The HSD well encountered a large hydrocarbon interval (2,400 feet) and tested at an equipment constrained rate of of 14,600 BOEpd which is comparable to the 14,863 BOEpd test rate from HST1. To put that in perspective, each of these wells would represent about 3% of TLM's 2007 estimated production level of 452,000 BOEpd and will be online in 2008. Talisman has a 60% working interest in these discoveries and the company is referring to the two wells as forming the basis for a new core area for them as they look ahead to 2008 and an accelerated exploration schedule including 4 additional exploratory tests plus further appraisal drilling on trend with these discoveries. This is the region from which we have been waiting for more good news now that the company is shrinking back in some parts of the world like the North Sea.

(TLM) Announces Tightened 2008 Capex. In a busy morning for these guys Talisman lined out a $4.4 B capital budget for 2008, down from $4.6 B last year. Major shifts come in increased southeast Asian spending (see prior bullet) and a decline in the budget for North America due to a combination of lower natural gas prices in Canada (they won't be alone so we should see imports to the U.S. finally start to fall this year) and from higher royalties specifically in Alberta. Reducing spending in the North Sea due to unanticipated project delays and some asset dispositions not only reduced the 2008 budget but also caused them to reign in their 2008 production guidance. They pointed to 5-10% organic core property annual growth through 2010 (which is no change from the past) but also pointed to 3-8% growth in 2008 which is light of prior guidance. You can bet the timing of the two press releases was no mistake although if their is a dip in the stock over the 2008 guidance I may add the common to my long April call position here.

Holdings Watch:

CALLS:

  • (SWN) Half out the January $55s for an average of $5.00; up 104% since Dec 20 entry. Will ease out of the rest today or tomorrow.

PUTS: No Action

STOCKS: No Action 

Odds & Ends

Analyst Watch: (XCO) raised to buy at KeyBanc, Oppenheimer takes refiners (VLO), (TSO) (SUN) (where I still hold puts), and (FTO) from peer perform to under-perform, fertilizer maker (POT) price target upped from $155 to $195 at RB,  

SEC May Alter Reserve Rules For Oil Sands. The SEC is considering allowing oil sands to be recorded just like conventional oil and for the price point to be shifted away from December 31 when bitumen prices are typically lowest. This would be favorable especially for (ECA) and (SU) as it will, in the future, limit the number or at least size of ceiling test write downs these companies take simply based on weaker prices, COG price target upped from $45 to $55 at Keybanc and aggressive buy rating maintained. 

(XNL) - A new penny name to watch conducting cellulosic ethanol research. 

 

105 Responses to “Takeback Tuesday”

  1. 1
    zman Says:

    Crude off $1.90 at the open. NG of $0.08.

    Across the board red stocks, especially refining.

  2. 2
    sane Says:

    Another nasty day.

  3. 3
    Sambone Says:

    9:36 am EST

    Nymex Crude Down $2 After Weak US Retail Sales

    DOW JONES NEWSWIRES
    From MARKET TALK:
    [Dow Jones] Nymex crude slides $2/bbl on weaker-than-expected retail sales. Feb crude -$2 at $92.20, after touching $92.15, its lowest price since Dec. 21. (matt.chambers@dowjones.com)

    1355 GMT [Dow Jones] Crude oil prices continue to slide on negative US retail sales data, with Nymex falling over $1, says a trader. “Everyone is concerned about a recession in the US,” the trader says. December retail sales declined 0.4%, more than the consensus forecast for a 0.1% drop. ICE February Brent -77c at $92.15/bbl, Nymex February light, sweet crude -$1.07 at $93.13/bbl. (LAN)

  4. 4
    rseidman Says:

    Z: Would you think this would be a good time to add to FEB CHK
    position?

  5. 5
    zman Says:

    RS – I’m waiting…earnings are a ways off as is the reserve report if it is separate this year…gas looks weaker and we just broke back through $40. If it tips back over $40 I’m may add, otherwise, I’ll do it at the hold of $39.

  6. 6
    zman Says:

    Re 5, it was back over $40 by the time I hit submit, I meant a little further into the day, as in closing over $40. Really, I want to add closer to earnings as I don’t see a lot of catalysts between no and then and I wouldn’t be surprised to see gas test $8 soon. It may hold it given the current cold … pretty hard to say.

    Come on FSLR fall.

  7. 7
    bhr5491 Says:

    Z, can you take a look at MMR someday? Looks like a nice deep find (800+ bcf?) in the Gulf. PXP may be the better play since they own 30% working interest?

    http://blog.nola.com/tpmoney/2008/01/mcmoran_well_finds_success_in.html

  8. 8
    Sambone Says:

    Overall market isn’t the “Goldilocks” anymore, but the “Three bears”.

  9. 9
    zman Says:

    Re: MMR saw some news yesterday but skipped it, will have a look and do a brief for the morning.

  10. 10
    zman Says:

    Wow, the refining charts look just pitiful now. Group is trading on bad technicals and poor early 2008 fundamentals,

    SUN has a little support at current levels from early 2007 and then look out below.

    TSO support at 33ish

    VLO mid to low $50s

  11. 11
    zman Says:

    ZTRADE: Entering Feb FSLR $210 puts for $21.10.

  12. 12
    Sambone Says:

    9:54 am EST

    Nymex Crude Slides On Weak US Retail Sales Data

    By Matt Chambers
    Of DOW JONES NEWSWIRES

    NEW YORK — Crude oil futures slid to a three-week low Tuesday after December U.S. retail sales came in weaker than expected, exacerbating concerns about a slowing economy that have seen oil prices slide from $100 at the start of the year.

    Retail sales fell by 0.4%, the Commerce Department said, compared with analysts’ expectations for a 0.1% drop in a Dow Jones Newswires survey. The results suggest the housing slump and gasoline prices might have caught up with consumers in the world’s biggest energy consumer.

    Oil’s reaction is a marked change to poor economic data toward the end of last year, when traders would often bid prices higher on the increased chance of further U.S. rate cuts, which weaken the dollar and are also seen as positive for crude demand.

    “The retail sales data spells more bad news for the economy and is outweighing the weaker dollar” and chances of further interest rate cuts, said Tom Bentz, an analyst at BNP Paribas Commodity Futures in New York.

    Light, sweet crude for February delivery on the New York Mercantile Exchange was recently down $2.27, or 2.4%, at $91.93 a barrel after falling as low as $91.75, the lowest for a front-month contract since Dec. 21. Brent crude on the ICE futures exchange fell $1.73 to $91.19 a barrel.

    Traders will now look to Wednesday’s weekly U.S. oil inventory data for further indications of the health of oil markets. Analysts are expecting crude to build by 700,000 barrels, the first build in nine weeks, according to the mean forecast in a Dow Jones Newswires survey of 10 analysts. Gasoline stockpiles are seen rising by 2.3 million barrels and distillates, which include heating oil and diesel fuel, are seen growing by 1.2 million barrels.

    Refinery use is seen falling by 1 percentage point to 90.3% of capacity.

    President George W. Bush, who is visiting Riyadh, told reporters that he hopes “OPEC nations put more supply on the market” and warned of high energy prices damaging consuming economies. The statements were made before a meeting with Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah.

    Saudi Arabia’s oil minister, Ali Naimi, responded by saying the kingdom, which is the world’s biggest oil exporter and the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries’ de facto leader, would raise production only when the market justifies it.

    Front-month February reformulated gasoline blendstock, or RBOB, fell 4.18 cents, or 1.8%, to $2.331 a gallon. February heating oil fell 2.42 cents, or 0.9%, to $2.565 a gallon.

    —By Matt Chambers, Dow Jones Newswires

  13. 13
    zman Says:

    very very very ugly. Retail sale can be down all they want. People still have to drive to get to work.

  14. 14
    freeflow Says:

    SUN holding up better than VLO or TSO.

  15. 15
    zman Says:

    yes, I noticed that … guessing its the cold in the northeast holding it up, that and that I have puts on it and no long on VLO which is getting a blanket party all its own today. Analysts have been nearly uniformly negative on the group but the VLO move down today is doubling SUN’s move.

    Did see one broker go positive on HOC yesterday sighting upcoming improvement in west coast and western state margins which I would add should also benefit TSO, FTO and WNR although I would not touch WNR long right now. Or any of them just yet.

  16. 16
    Dman Says:

    DRYS getting hammered. Tempting to nibble here…

  17. 17
    zman Says:

    PBR getting whacked for 5% seems excessive….should be more positive news there soon but their market is down 3%.

    FSLR trying to help me out down $11 today.

    Dman – I continue to steer clear but the time is coming, prior to Feb 8 when I’ll be back in there. Rates keep falling = stocks keep falling. Early Feb rates should stop falling and reverse higher so one would think…

  18. 18
    Bob Says:

    Anyone like YGE here at30, down 12+% today?

  19. 19
    zman Says:

    Bob – very tempting. People are just punting charts today. Plenty of bargains like this one and no reason to believe they won’t do it again tomorrow. Last I say fed funds was leaning towards a 75 bip cut and yet the market is down 2 bills now. What do they want, a full point?

  20. 20
    kaman Says:

    Should’ve stayed in cash for New Year, as it is I’m overexposed. Won’t wipeout my trading capital, but January opex Friday will be a dark day for me. Anybody else brooding?

    cheers-K

  21. 21
    freeflow Says:

    I see SUN support around $58.65 – if it drops below that support is in the high 40’s…

  22. 22
    Sambone Says:

    K – I’m short (SKF, SDS) and long energy, GLD, DBA, etc.

  23. 23
    zman Says:

    K – I too was happier yesterday. Most of my positions are relatively small (one entry or two entries each, some half outs), the doubles on PBR is going to smart a little.

    CHK getting hit now along with the rest. Gas holding up surprisingly well.

  24. 24
    kaman Says:

    I resisted the siren song of the solars til about 2 weeks ago…bought SOLF Jan call (small positions too)…even on the up days it’s sank…has the lowest P/E of the group….I just don’t get it. Plus Jan VLO calls that are laughable now. Tried to stem the bleeding last week with some AUY and GS, but there’s little sanctuary.

  25. 25
    kaman Says:

    Re: #19, actually, yeah, I would like a full point.

  26. 26
    Sambone Says:

    Waffle Phil

    http://www.321energy.com/reports/flynn/current.html

  27. 27
    scoop006 Says:

    Denise- Was it your T/A who called $55 on DRYS?

  28. 28
    zman Says:

    Scoop:

    It was Denise’s TA chick, said fall to $44 with an intermediate low of $55 last Tuesday. Back when I was musing about shorting the sucker at $70….should have pulled that trigger.

  29. 29
    zman Says:

    ZTRADE: Out 2x position in FSLR January $200 puts for $4.40 up 28%.

  30. 30
    zman Says:

    FSLR down $17

    They are just taking a chainsaw to everything right now.

    crude down $2.60 (where’s Nicky…this is her kind of day?)

    nat gas down $0.16

    May take some PBR $105 calls at day’s end.

  31. 31
    scoop006 Says:

    Cramer thinks “C” trades down to book value of $22.74 and he plans to sell once his restrictions allow.

  32. 32
    zman Says:

    FSLR look likes the drybulks two months ago…

    Let me see, you want me to buy a $30K piece of equipment to hook to my house with a payout of 15 to 20 years if the sun shines just right and I’m worried about shopping at the Gap and filling up my car’s gas tank? Hmmm, choices, choices, maybe next year.

  33. 33
    zman Says:

    Re Cramer, it will be interesting to see where C is 1 month and 3 months from now.

  34. 34
    Sambone Says:

    I believe that Ben will lower this week.

  35. 35
    dmh Says:

    Z. Do you know about this webcast on the dry ship industry today at 11am EST?
    transcript available later.

    http://www.capitallinkwebcasts.com/2008/drybulk_janurary/main.html

  36. 36
    zman Says:

    Sam – me too

    DMH – no, I did not, thanks, will listen to replay

  37. 37
    zman Says:

    Wish I’d listed to RAM on the second RIG piece call sale … house money got whacked today.

  38. 38
    ram Says:

    I wish ram would have listened to ram and sell into strength near the close on a lot of options. Feb could be another disaster.

  39. 39
    ram Says:

    Jan could be another disaster. I don’t have a crystal ball so I can’t speak abot FEB.

  40. 40
    freeflow Says:

    SUN keeps bouncing off support…

  41. 41
    zman Says:

    That dry bulk conference is at 2 pm EST

  42. 42
    TTupp Says:

    some guy on cnbc said to buy solar stocks, im going to start to hold them accountable and tivo every day, and show charts of the stocks theres bums pick 3 months after they recommend them. for any newbies out there: the best thing you can do for your trading is not listen to your tv on cnbc during the day. you’ll have better trading success watching the food network!

  43. 43
    TTupp Says:

    tso keeps bouncing of $37.15

  44. 44
    zman Says:

    T: agreed.

    SU falling out of triple digits, wow.

    SUN doing the same thing although it may take out that low yet and the charts look like death.

  45. 45
    zman Says:

    SUN less than a dime away from LOD.

    RBOB % loss today 3.3
    Crude 2.7
    HO 2.1

    no help for cracks there.

  46. 46
    Sambone Says:

    12:37 pm EST

    Nymex Crude Down $3 On Recession Concerns

    [Dow Jones] Nymex crude is now down $3/bbl, continuing to slide on concerns the U.S. is heading into a recession after weaker than expected retail sales for December. Feb crude -$3 at $91.20 after falling as low as $91.10, the lowest Dec. 21. President Bush is visiting Saudi Arabia and has made it clear he wants the kingdom to boost oil production, though the country’s oil minister says output will only be raised if the market justifies it. (matt.chambers@dowjones.com)

  47. 47
    zman Says:

    ZTRADE: Entering RIG Feb $140 Calls for $4. Stock is down $7 (5%) on a very sloppy day in the market. No bad news, a little good news as highlighted in the post.

  48. 48
    ram Says:

    Double down if the bid on RIG is $3?

  49. 49
    zman Says:

    Ram – not me, not until the morning. Oil service in panic mode.

  50. 50
    ram Says:

    Don’t you buy when people are panicing?

  51. 51
    ram Says:

    Trading Places.

  52. 52
    zman Says:

    I already did.

  53. 53
    zman Says:

    yes, my GI Joe with the kung fu grip just got his arm torn off.

  54. 54
    zman Says:

    Ram – if it goes back to down 7 or less you get to tell me you told me so again, COL

  55. 55
    zman Says:

    Did anyone listen to the panel on drybulks? Frankly I forgot, no moves in the stocks as I guess the CEO’s couldn’t find away to right the global economy.

    SLB getting slammed for 6.5%, HAL for 3.4% seems to be only time HAL outperforms SLB (which is twice as expensive on a forward basis) is during blood red days like today.

  56. 56
    Bob Says:

    Nothing new or specific to any company yet…they did say there may be some weakness in absorbing all the new ships in the future (2010)

  57. 57
    ram Says:

    HAL FEB’s?

  58. 58
    ram Says:

    ANY FEB’s that are screaming at you?

  59. 59
    freeflow Says:

    I bought some Feb DRYS 65’s

  60. 60
    ram Says:

    We are at Aug. lows again.

  61. 61
    ram Says:

    When does someone look around at see that we are overrun and shout “broken arrow”?

  62. 62
    Sambone Says:

    Ram – I think Helicopter Ben will lower 50 bhps this week, and possibly more at the end of the month. I will sell into this and go more short. The first support on the Dow has just been broken.

  63. 63
    zman Says:

    Ram – not today and you know I like to buy on weakness but why step in front of a train? Pretty silly, irrational scale moves but they could do this again in the morning.

    These look interesting as in overdone:

    SWN Feb $60s and I’m not sure they will have announced by expiry but “for a trade” if gas holds $8 through Thursday

    APC Feb $65s but for earnings more than a trade.

    APA Feb $105s but I’d definitely wait on tomorrow’s inventory number which is supposed to be the first build in 9 weeks

    DRYS – getting tempting but still bottom fishing (good luck FreeFlow!)

    HK off 5% is just stupid

    RIG (got mine)

    PBR – doubling the 3.5% loss in the IBOV, again that’s an oil report wait.

    Lots more interesting but the broad market rules right now and though oil is probably safe from a collapse to $50 or $60 sentiment is, at least today, against it.

  64. 64
    ram Says:

    We were soldiers – Mel Gibson.

  65. 65
    Sambone Says:

    Ram – Next support for Dow is 11,940. If you look at a chart of the Dow, kinda looks like a “Head and shoulders chart”.
    I agree with Z that energy is getting spanked because the crowd is exiting everything today. I’m wanting to add to my postions, but not today.

  66. 66
    zman Says:

    Sam – agree, its a marathon, not a foot race. As to head and shoulders, doesn’t pattern formation work better with individual stocks than with the really big indexes that everyone is looking at? Think I read that over the weekend, lol.

  67. 67
    Sambone Says:

    Z – True, but there’s always a first time, ya know.

  68. 68
    TTupp Says:

    taking dec vlo 55 calls if we fall through $55.50 on volume.

    we’re headed for march’s lows un undoubtedly.

    with fed disappointment, poor gdp numbers, poor job & retail numbers for jan, or any combination of any of these, we’re on a crazy train to summer of 06’s S&P 500’s lows- a true 20% bear market support from mid-October highs.

    Denise: i would be asking for my money back on that newsletter that told you to go long. ALWAYS remember that oscillators are great indicators when used in conjunction with fundamentals and sentiment. and in a strong bear market indicators such as stochastics, RSI, and MACD- and even the more sophisticated concoctions- can remain “oversold” indefinitely if the market feels like it. exclusively watching technical indicators is like exclusively getting your investment ideas from CNBC. IMHO.

  69. 69
    Sambone Says:

    T – I thought that everybody got their ideas from CNBC. LOL

  70. 70
    ram Says:

    We were soldiers – Mel Gibson!

  71. 71
    zman Says:

    PBR headlines today:

    PBR likely to seal deal to drill off Cuba as Brazil is about to announce $1B in investments in and credit lines for Cuba.

    Domestic reserves rise 1.2% for 2007.

    Reserve replacement = 123% which is not too shabby given their size.

    I’ll have more highlights in tomorrow’s post but the reserve report that just hit the wire looks attractive.

  72. 72
    zman Says:

    ZTRADE:

    Entering FEB PBR $110 calls for $5.00.

  73. 73
    TTupp Says:

    Z- i always thought that chart formations work better for the largest most efficient stocks (ie indices). there are a lot of people that play the DIA, QQQQ, and SPY ETF’s out there instead of stocks now a days. i have a hedgie friend who runs $100+ m in a fund and indexes the Q’s. this makes for a more compelling case for the self fulfilling prophecy.

  74. 74
    zman Says:

    T – so are you saying when you see a Head N Shoulders on the DJIA it is more likely to do what you think such a pattern should do than say TSO?

  75. 75
    ram Says:

    Wow – I read your mind. Don’t tell Mrs. RAM!

  76. 76
    zman Says:

    ATW says to take lower than expected charge over dayrate billing disagreement. Was to cost them $0.06 EPS, now only $0.03…stock has been beat down since an opco analyst cut them to hold a couple of days ago.

  77. 77
    ram Says:

    HEY Z – RIG – ITYSA!

  78. 78
    Sambone Says:

    Hey Ram, take a look at TNH. I want to own it, but don’t yet.

  79. 79
    Sambone Says:

    3:24 pm EST

    Nymex Crude Slides On US Demand Concern

    By MATT CHAMBERS
    Of DOW JONES NEWSWIRES

    NEW YORK — Crude oil futures slumped to a three-week low Tuesday after U.S. retail sales came in weaker than expected, sparking more concern about slowing oil demand.

    The poor sales figures exacerbated concerns that the U.S., the world’s biggest energy consumer, is headed for recession, and led to the seventh fall in oil prices in the nine sessions since Jan. 2, when prices first touched $100 a barrel.

    Light, sweet crude for February delivery on the New York Mercantile Exchange fell $2.30, or 2.4%, to $91.90 a barrel, the lowest settlement for a front-month contract since Dec. 20. Brent crude on the ICE futures exchange settled $1.94 lower at $90.98 a barrel.

    December retail sales fell by 0.4%, the Commerce Department said, while also revising lower the previous two months. That compared with expectations for a 0.1% drop in a Dow Jones Newswires survey of analysts. The results suggest the housing slump and higher energy prices caught up with consumers over the latest holiday period and slowed spending.

    Oil’s reaction is a marked change to poor economic data toward the end of last year, when traders would often bid prices higher on the increased chance of further U.S. rate cuts, which weaken the dollar and are also seen as positive for crude demand.

    “The retail sales data spells more bad news for the economy and is outweighing the weaker dollar” and chances of further interest rate cuts, said Tom Bentz, an analyst at BNP Paribas Commodity Futures in New York.

    Traders will now look to Wednesday’s weekly U.S. oil inventory data for further indications of the health of oil markets. Analysts are expecting crude to draw down by 300,000 barrels, the ninth straight draw, according to the mean forecast in a Dow Jones Newswires survey of 14 analysts. Gasoline stockpiles are seen rising by 2.4 million barrels and distillates, which include heating oil and diesel fuel, are seen growing by 1 million barrels.

    Refinery use is seen falling by 0.7 percentage point to 90.6% of capacity.

    President George W. Bush, who is visiting Riyadh, told reporters that he hopes “OPEC nations put more supply on the market” and warned of high energy prices damaging consuming economies. The statements were made before a meeting with Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah.

    Saudi Arabia’s oil minister, Ali Naimi, responded by saying the kingdom, which is the world’s biggest oil exporter and the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries’ de facto leader, would raise production when the market justifies it.

    While this represents no change in OPEC’s usual line, the cartel is due to meet Feb. 1 in Vienna, and Bush’s three-day visit to Saudi Arabia could put pressure on the kingdom.

    “Bush’s public call for more OPEC oil raised the possibility of increased supply,” Tim Evans, an analyst at Citigroup in New York, said in a research note.

    Crude oil prices fell as low as $90.98, but rallied almost $1 in the last hour of trading after prices managed to head back above $91. Reports that Nigerian militant group, Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta, claimed responsibility for an explosion that killed a top port official in the country’s chaotic oil region also supported prices.

    Prices rose Monday partly after MEND claimed responsibility for a fire and after Royal Dutch Shell PLC (RDSB.LN) said it declared force majeure on oil exports from Nigeria after a separate attack last week.

    Front-month February reformulated gasoline blendstock, or RBOB, fell 6.36 cents, or 2.7%, to $2.33092 a gallon. February heating oil fell 4.05 cents, or 1.6%, to $2.5487 a gallon.

    –By Matt Chambers, Dow Jones Newswires

  80. 80
    ram Says:

    Oh, the crap people. Are you looking for another 10 to 15 lower?

  81. 81
    Sambone Says:

    Ram, yep. This puppy is very tradeable. Big swings either way. I bght it at 106 and sold it at 130 on a stop. Not for the faint of heart.

  82. 82
    ram Says:

    I know the FED reducing by 50 bp’s is not going to fix what is broken. I believe history will show their inaction prior to a catastrophy will hurt Republicans gaining in Congress.

  83. 83
    Sambone Says:

    Wow, look at the TRIN.

  84. 84
    ram Says:

    I am not a Republican or a Democrat. I will be whatever Mrs. RAM wants me to be prior to voting – life is easier that way.

  85. 85
    freeflow Says:

    Can someone help me out with the IB symbol for Natural Gas?

  86. 86
    zman Says:

    FF – what is IB? The front month is NG/G8 for Feb or you can always use NG1

  87. 87
    Sambone Says:

    I use ngc1.z for the front month

  88. 88
    zman Says:

    I like the new closing low for FSLR here, think we see a test of $200 and then maybe lookout below.

  89. 89
    zman Says:

    here’s another set of symbols for nat gas

    http://www2.barchart.com/dfutpage.asp?sym=ng

  90. 90
    freeflow Says:

    IB = Interactive Brokers

  91. 91
    Sambone Says:

    Tini time!

  92. 92
    Nicky Says:

    Afternoon all. So much for an inter meeting rate cut!

  93. 93
    zman Says:

    Need something stronger than a tini after today.

  94. 94
    zman Says:

    Afternoon Nicky…get any tennis in today?

  95. 95
    ram Says:

    Wow – you have to go back to March 13, 2007 for a lower S&P close.

  96. 96
    zman Says:

    Ok, I’m going to go soak my head. Back in an hour or two or more.

  97. 97
    Nicky Says:

    No tennis today Z!

    Apparently Fed have never done an inter meeting rate move so close to a meeting so it must be unlikely now. I thought today’s relatively benign PPI data would enable them to go for it.

  98. 98
    Nicky Says:

    Intel misses. Off nearly 12% after the close.

  99. 99
    Nicky Says:

    Could weigh heavy on the Dow again tomorrow.

  100. 100
    kaman Says:

    In the words of Marv: “Sure went down the toilet on that ugly b*tch”…

  101. 101
    Nicky Says:

    Not sure what’s going on but dow futures suddenly dropped 60 and spx 11. Can’t think it is Intel as that was out 20 minutes ago and very little reaction from futures market unless my feed is wrong.

    SPX has support at 1368

  102. 102
    Nicky Says:

    Market in absolute freefall…

  103. 103
    Wyoming Says:

    Here is some rumor to take a mind off the misery. Water haulers are saying that Weatherford is buying BJ Services. On the same subject, all of the bids I have been looking at for fracturing US Land is dropping fast.

    Other rumor out there is Quicksilver’s Drilling Manager quitting.

    Believe in half of what you see and nothing of what you hear….

  104. 104
    zman Says:

    Thanks Wyo – hadn’t seen a marked (protracted) downturn in gas directed drilling…need to check Tx permits. Anyway, why do you suppose fracs falling in $? How about onshore rig day rates, still lower?

  105. 105
    TTupp Says:

    JP Morgan missed, should be an intresting open. took- vlo jan 55 puts at 315 yesterday- lets hope this lottery ticket pays off

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