This Week’s Market Buzz

  • According to Oil Pro, oil prices rose toward $34/bbl, amid growing chatter about the possibility of OPEC and non-OPEC producers meeting to discuss cutting production levels to support prices. Brent hit $35/bbl after the Russian Energy Minister said Saudi Arabia had proposed cutting oil output by up to 5 percent by each country in order to bolster oil prices. Brent was about $6 higher than the 12-year low set this earlier this month, but it’s still down approximately 10.5 percent in January following a 16 percent drop in December. Meanwhile, WTI was up $0.04 to $32.34/bbl, after settling the previous session up $0.85, representing a gain of 2.7 percent.

  • A frac sand company in Barron County, Wis., hoping to mine sand below the groundwater table was rebuffed by a local town board. Sumner, Wis., town board Chair Steve Palmquist said Canada-based Source Energy Services wanted to dig into the groundwater for finer and higher quality sand deposits. The company would dredge sand from a pool of groundwater forming in its mine. Palmquist said the board voted unanimously against it. The state Department of Natural Resources doesn’t prohibit the practice, nor do some counties. Three frac sand mines in Monroe County are permitted to mine into groundwater as is one, now shuttered mine, in Barron County. 
  • Canada-based Trican Well Services announced a deal to sell its U.S. frac fleet to Keane Group, a privately-held, U.S.-based well-completion services company. The deal marks Trican’s exit from the U.S. market. Under the agreement, Keane will acquire the majority of Trican’s U.S. assets, including equipment, key employees and its engineering capabilities.

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