This Week’s Market Buzz

• Oil prices continue to rise. At press time West Texas Intermediate was at $110.6 up 4.43%, while Brent Crude was at $111.6, up 4.19%.

• Devon Energy Corp., one of the biggest oil explorers in the Permian Basin, is getting into the sand business to combat rising costs. The Oklahoma City-based company told investors of a new, so-called mobile frac-sand mine it launched on 15,000 acres of land it owns in the west Texas county of Loving. The mine is expected to save the shale giant more than $200,000 per well amid rising sand prices and can account for as much as a quarter of its sand needs in the Delaware half of the Permian Basin.

• The number of oil and natural gas drilling permits issued by the Texas Railroad Commission reached an all-time high in March, at more than 1,100. Hundreds of companies of all sizes are jumping into the fray. Activity is picking up across the state, with the Permian Basin reportedly seeing more than 900 horizontal permits.

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