Schlumberger predicts strong 2018 for shale

This Oct. 18, 2016, file photo, oil show attendees walk past the Schlumberger booth at the Permian Basin International Oil Show at Ector County Coliseum, in Odessa, Texas. (AP)
Updated 20 January 2018
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Schlumberger predicts strong 2018 for shale

NEW YORK: Schlumberger reported better-than-expected profit in the fourth quarter and said it expected another strong year for North American shale drilling in 2018.
Chairman Paal Kibsgaard said explorers and producers now predict 15-20 percent growth in North American investment this year and said 2018 would be the first year of growth for all parts of its global operations since 2014.
“Looking at the oil market, the strong growth in demand is projected to continue in 2018, on the back of a robust global economy,” he said.
The recovery of oil prices to almost $70 a barrel has given fresh legs to shale drilling in North America, poising the US to push oil output past 10 million barrels per day — toppling a record set in 1970.
Prices of West Texas Intermediate surged about 25 percent in the past three months, while Brent crude climbed nearly 24 percent, spurring US shale producers to put more rigs to work.
Schlumberger’s revenue from North America rose 59 percent to $2.81 billion for the fourth quarter, pushing total revenue up 15 percent to $8.18 billion.
International revenues fell one percent during that time.
The company pointed to the strong shale market as the reason for its run-down of its seismic acquisition business. It said it was the only one of its businesses which it did not believe would meet expectations for returns going forward.
— REUTERS


UK households grow less confident about their finances in October — IHS Markit

Updated 22 October 2018
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UK households grow less confident about their finances in October — IHS Markit

  • 23 percent of households expect their finances to weaken over the next year
  • The survey asked 1,500 respondents

LONDON: British households’ confidence in their finances worsened this month as their earnings from employment rose at the weakest rate since February, adding to growing signs of caution among consumers, a survey showed on Monday.
The IHS Markit Household Finance Index, watched by the Bank of England as a gauge of consumers’ financial health, cooled to a three-month low of 45.1 from 45.7 in September, though the reading is still one of the highest since the survey’s 2009 launch.
The survey’s findings may raise eyebrows among BoE officials who expect inflation pressure to pick up over the next couple of years, driven by a gradual pick-up in wage growth.
Data firm IHS Markit said the British public’s inflation expectations for the next 12 month fell this month to the lowest in two years, while optimism about house prices was the lowest since July 2016 — just after the Brexit vote.
“UK households cast their most downbeat assessment of current finances in three months in October as weaker earnings growth from employment limited cash availability,” IHS Markit economist Joe Hayes said.
“Looking ahead, households were more concerned about their future budgets.”
Other gauges of financial sentiment among households have also soured recently.
Expectations for personal finances over the next 12 months struck a five-month low in September, according to a closely-watched report from pollsters GfK.
And the latest Thomson Reuters/Ipsos Primary Consumer Sentiment Index showed 23 percent of households expect their finances to weaken over the next year — the biggest proportion since March 2013.
IHS Markit said households’ expectations for Bank of England interest rates were barely changed compared from a month ago, with half of households expecting another interest rate hike within the next six months.
The survey of 1,500 people was conducted between Oct. 11 and Oct. 16.