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2 Red Flags on Royal Dutch Shell’s Cash Flow Statement

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Reuben Gregg BrewerJul 22, 2016 at 1:16PM

Royal Dutch Shell (NYSE:RDS-A) (NYSE:RDS-B) has been hit just as hard by the oil industry downturn as any other oil major. So far, though, it’s managed to keep its dividend intact. Still, the company’s cash flow statement bears watching, because keeping that dividend going is getting harder to pull off. Here are two red flags to watch on Royal Dutch Shell’s cash flow statement.   

Cash flow, not earnings

Shell’s earnings cratered following the mid-2014 oil price drop, going from around $3.00 a share in 2014 to just $0.60 or so last year. (Note that the U.S. traded ADRs represent two shares of Shell stock, so these figures and all of the other per share numbers in the text, which are based on one share of stock, may be half of what you expect to see if you own the ADR.) In the first quarter of this year, the integrated oil giant only earned about a dime a share. Clearly, things aren’t going well for Shell’s business right now. That’s understandable, since oil and natural gas prices play a big part in the company’s results, but there are implications to the bottom-line decline.  

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Next Week Is as Good as It Gets for Big Oil

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ByRakteem Katakey and Joe Carroll: 22 July 2016

Several majors expected to post highest earnings in 3 quarters

Strong performance may not last as oil seen easing back to $40

For oil companies, the second quarter might be as good as it gets.

Shares gained more than in any other industry, thanks to crude rising from a 12-year low. Profits were the best in at least three quarters for majors including Royal Dutch Shell Plc, Chevron Corp. and BP Plc, helped by cost cuts, analysts say. The rest of the year might not be as rosy as supply holds near record levels.

The combined market value of the world’s oil companies shrank by $2 trillion in the past two years following crude’s collapse. While analysts agree the worst of the oversupply is over, BNP Paribas SA and JBC Energy GmbH are among those forecasting a slide back to $40 a barrel as output rebounds in Canada, Iran, Nigeria and the U.S., hurting producers whose investment cuts have put future growth in doubt.

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Is Gas The Future? Shell Seems To Think So

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By Gregory Brew – Jul 20, 2016

The world’s second largest private oil company sees a new future, and it’s not in oil.

Shell has made a concerted effort to shift the bulk of its business from oil-related projects to natural gas, LNG and renewables. Coming on the heels of its February purchase of BG Group (a $54 billion acquisition), Shell has organized a division focused solely on renewable energy. It announced new investment for its LNG facility on Curtis Island in Australia, where natural gas has enjoyed $180 billion in new capital. It has emerged as a stronger voice on global climate change than its competitor ExxonMobil and the company’s website proposes a number of “Shell Scenarios” that could allow for a growing energy market while creating less CO2.

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Royal Dutch Shell: Huge Dividend And Long-Term Growth Ahead

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Wayne Duggan: 20 July 2016

A number of British stocks have been hit hard since the referendum vote to leave the EU, but Royal Dutch Shell (RDS.A, RDS.B) is not one of them. Shares are now up 0.3% since the Brexit vote after initially falling more than 8% during the knee-jerk market sell-off.

With the possibility that the Brexit could severely impact British GDP growth in coming years, RDS.B offers a unique opportunity to invest in a company within a sector that is in a global upswing, a company that has significant international exposure and a company that is committed to maintaining the single largest dividend payment in the MSCI World Index.

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The Future of Big Oil? At Shell, It’s Not Oil

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Screen Shot 2016-07-20 at 07.42.44The energy giant is shifting to gas as the industry adapts to climate change.

By Matthew CampbellRakteem Katakey and James Paton: 20 July 2016

At Australia’s Curtis Island, you can see Big Oil morphing into Big Gas. Just off the continent’s rugged northeastern coast lies a 667-acre liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal owned by Royal Dutch Shell, an engineering feat of staggering complexity. Gas from more than 2,500 wells travels hundreds of miles by pipeline to the island, where it’s chilled and pumped into 10-story-high tanks before being loaded onto massive ships. “We’re more a gas company than an oil company,” says Ben van Beurden, Shell’s chief executive officer. “If you have to place bets, which we have to, I’d rather place them there.”

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Royal Dutch Shell: Does Everything Come Down to Oil Price Recovery?

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By Staff Writer on Jul 19, 2016 at 9:07 am EST

World’s leading integrated oil and gas company, Royal Dutch Shell plc (ADR) (NYSE:RDS.A), concluded a deal to acquire BG not too long ago. The move was widely perceived as an aggressive step to become a dominant supplier of liquefied natural gas (LNG) across the globe. The deal is expected to help Shell diversify its operations and enable it to benefit from cost synergies in the years to come.

The merger came at a time when oil prices were on a downward trajectory, with the step expected to drive the company out of the downturn. Oil prices that were once above $110 per barrel have now plunged below $50. Last year, when the Dutch company announced the deal, many mergers and acquisition pundits criticized Shell’s willingness to pay 50% premium in a depressed crude oil environment.

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How Lower Oil Prices, Brexit Are Impacting North Sea Operations

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By Muhammad Ali Khawar on Jul 19, 2016 at 7:35 am EST

Thanks to Brexit vote, the oil and gas markets are experiencing significant level of uncertainties. With UK now stepping out of the European Union, many oil and gas companies have reduced operations as they feel that demand may not be as robust as it used to be.

The North Sea is one of the highest cost regions in the world. With the recent development in the UK market, companies fear higher costs, which can derail operations in the region. As reported by Bloomberg, Wood Mackenzie, a consulting firm, has indicated that around 30% of the fields in the region are operating at a loss.

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American Gas Will Be First to Pass Through Expanded Panama Canal

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Naureen Malik: July 19, 2016

Shell set to send tanker carrying U.S. LNG through canal

BP scheduled to send second tanker through the following day

The first cargo of liquefied natural gas set to pass through the newly expanded Panama Canal locks will be American.

Royal Dutch Shell Plc’s Maran Gas Apollonia vessel is scheduled to pass through the canal linking the Atlantic and Pacific oceans on July 25 after loading LNG from the U.S. Gulf Coast, according to the Panama Canal Authority, which oversees the locks’ operations. BP Plc’s British Merchant LNG tanker is expected to become the second to pass through the canal the following day and a third tanker is slated for early August, the agency said in a statement late Monday.

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Getting Ready for Another Round of Commodity Market Downturn

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By Staff Writer on Jul 18, 2016 at 7:30 am EST

Crude oil prices have dropped below the $50 per barrel mark yet again after hitting their highest level in 2016 last month. US crude benchmark, West Texas Intermediate (WTI) is trading at $45.97 per barrel while Brent is trading at $47.69 per barrel in European Markets today. The global crude oil benchmark reached as high as $52.51 per barrel earlier in June.

Although oil prices have recovered some momentum after touching 12-year lows of $27 per barrel earlier in 2016, it still has a lot of ground to gain before reaching summer-2014 levels. Oil market showed some positive gains in June when oil prices crossed the psychological barrier of $50 per barrel. However, it was short-lived as it is currently trading below $48 per barrel.

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Shell with a full tank of debt

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By JACK HOUGH: JULY 16, 2016

A dash of desperation is working wonders for module article chiclet Royal Dutch Shell. The price of Brent crude oil has fallen by half in two years, pulling Shell’s cash flow from operations well below what it typically needs to pay its dividend and fund exploration. Meanwhile, the purchase of United Kingdom gas specialist BG Group, completed in February, left Shell with a full tank of debt.

Something had to give. Investors braced for a dividend cut, which is why the American depositary receipts (ticker: RDS.B) started the year priced low enough to yield 8%. But rather than reduce its payout, Shell slashed spending on projects and sold low-return businesses. Last month, it announced a capital plan through 2020 that calls for more asset sales and a limit on capital spending.

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Royal Dutch Shell Vs BP plc: Who’s Better Equipped to Tackle the Downturn?

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By Muhammad Ali Khawar on Jul 15, 2016 at 10:04 am EST

Royal Dutch Shell plc. (ADR) (NYSE:RDS.A) finally closed its $52 billion merger with BG group in February. The deal is considered as one of the largest mergers in the oil and gas sector and is expected to help Shell diversify its operations and benefit from cost synergies.

The Shell-BG merger comes at a time when oil prices have plummeted significantly. Oil prices that once traded over $110 per barrel have now tumbled to as low as $50 per barrel. Last year, when Shell approached BG for the first time, many criticized the deal especially because of the 50% premium Shell was willing to pay in a depressed crude environment.

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Shell chair Andrew Smith vows to rein in costs as downturn bites

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ANDREW BURRELL: July 15, 2016

Shell Australia chairman Andrew Smith says the downturn in the oil and gas industry has strengthened his resolve to rein in costs as he seeks to integrate the company — the nation’s biggest foreign investor — with the Queensland assets of BG Group.

“You have to treat every dollar like it’s your own,” Smith tells The Deal, published in The Australian today, as he reflects on his 30-year career and the massive changes that have hit Shell and the petroleum industry. His mantra even extends, Smith’s colleagues reveal, to their boss’s insistence a few years ago that newspaper subscriptions be pared back in the company’s Melbourne office.

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S&P trims rating on oil major

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by Tsveta ZikolovaWednesday, 13 Jul 2016, 14:09 BST

Standard & Poor’s has trimmed its rating on Royal Dutch Shell (LON:RDSA), the Financial Times has reported. The move has been prompted by the group’s £35-billion takeover of former smaller London-listed peer BG Group completed earlier this year.

Shell’s share price has been little changed in today’s session, having lost 0.07 percent to stand at 2,106.00p as of 13:25 BST. The shares are marginally underperforming the broader London market, with the benchmark FTSE 100 index having inched 0.12 percent higher to 6,688.62 points. Shell’s shares have gained nearly 16 percent over the past year, and are up just under 38 percent in the year-to-date.

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Corrib flaring before court

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LIKE THE SUN A still image taken from a recording shows the glow from the flaring at the Corrib Gas terminal on New Year’s Eve.

EPA confirms issuing of summons

Áine Ryan: 12 JULY 2016

SHELL E&P Ireland will appear before Dublin Metropolitan District Court on September 5 next over an intense flaring incident at the controversial Corrib refinery on December 31 last, The Mayo News can confirm. The EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) has confirmed it issued a summons to Shell last week after a six-month investigation into what locals described as a ‘frightening’ event.  They said it lasted 30 to 40 minutes, lit up the sky and was seen from as far away as Achill and Foxford. The fire from the giant chimney stack was accompanied by a ‘low, loud rumble like a supersonic boom’, according to local witnesses

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Shell’s New Sensors Could Reduce Exploration Costs Dramatically

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By Irina Slav – Jul 12, 2016, 1:04 PM CDT

Searching for oil and gas is an activity with uncertain success—an activity with a bit less uncertainty were it not for 3D seismic surveying. And this uncertainty could be reduced even further, thanks to technological advancements that Shell is currently testing.

Seismic surveying is the first step in any oil and gas exploration project. It’s an expensive undertaking that requires scattering thousands of sensors on the ground and then analyzing the data they register about the subterranean rock makeup that may or may not include oil and gas-bearing formations.

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Shell’s LNG Canada venture again delays export terminal decision

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(Reuters) – Royal Dutch Shell Plc RDSa.L and its LNG Canada partners have once again pushed back the timing of a decision on building a British Columbia liquefied natural gas export (LNG) terminal, the latest setback for the Canadian province’s energy ambitions.

LNG Canada, whose participants also include PetroChina Co Ltd 601857.SS, Mitsubishi Corporation 8058.T and Kogas, cited global industry challenges, including capital constraints, for requiring more time prior to making a final investment decision.

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Shell-Led Group Delays Decision on Canada Gas Export Plan

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By Natalie Obiko Pearson and Rebecca Penty: July 11, 2016

LNG Canada cites industry challenges, capital constraints

Project says it can’t confirm when it plans final decision

Royal Dutch Shell Plc and its partners delayed for the second time this year a final investment decision on a terminal to export liquefied natural gas from Canada’s Pacific Coast to Asian markets.

LNG Canada, which is also backed by Mitsubishi Corp., PetroChina Co. and Korea Gas Corp., cited “global industry challenges, including capital constraints” in announcing the postponement in a statement on Monday.

“Participants have determined they need more time prior to taking a final investment decision,” the joint venture said. “At this time, we cannot confirm when this decision will be made.”

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BG Houston Office to Close; Lay Off 154 Workers

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According to a letter sent to the Texas Workforce Commission, BG, which became a wholly owned subsidiary of Shell February 15, 2016, will permanently close its Houston office and lay off 154 employees. The majority of employees, 118, will be laid off August 31 and the remaining 36 employees will be let go September 30.

Employees do not have bumping rights and BG will offer severance benefits and outplacement services to laid-off employees.

In January, Shell CEO Ben van Beurden said the acquisition would result in a total workforce reduction of 10,000 workers across both companies. Shell has also stated the company will close BG’s head office located near London by the end of the year, Reuters reported. In addition, Shell will close BG’s Aberdeen office and its Brabazon House office in Manchester by the end of 2017.  

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Shell CEO says interested in Yuzhno-Kirinskoye field – Vedomosti

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11 July 2016

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Royal Dutch Shell (RDSa.L) is interested to take part in developing Russia’s Yuzhno-Kirinskoye field, Chief Executive Ben van Beurden told Russia’s Vedomosti daily newspaper in an interview.

He added that expansion of the Sakhalin-2 LNG project in Russia’s Pacific Island of Sakhalin may need gas both from that field and from the Sakhalin-1 project.

(Reporting by Katya Golubkova; Editing by Dmitry Solovyov)

SOURCE

Only 25% of Nigeria’s gas reserves is utilised, says Shell chief

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Only 25 per cent of the country’s gas reserves is being utilised, the Managing Director of Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) and Country Chair of Shell Companies in Nigeria, Mr. Osagie Okunbor, has said.

He spoke at the Nigerian Gas Association’s Business Forum in Lagos.

Okunbor, who represented Oil Producers Trade Section (OPTS) Chairman, Clay Neff listed some of the problems of the sector’s development to include gas producers debts, poor gas infrastructure, insufficient funding and lack of a conducive business environment.

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Small fire at Prelude LNG construction site in South Korea -Shell

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SYDNEY/SEOUL, July 8 (Reuters) – Shell said a small fire occurred at the construction site in South Korea for its huge floating Prelude liquefied natural gas (LNG) project, with work resuming immediately and an investigation underway.

The incident would not have an impact on the delivery schedule, according to a source in South Korea.

Shell has declined to reveal the timetable or the budget for Prelude, based on a giant processing vessel being built in Samsung Heavy Industries’ Geoje shipyard that will be towed to a gas field off the west Australia coast.

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Einstein Never Knew He’d Help Shell Discover Oil

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By Eric Roston: July 7, 2016

Albert Einstein suggested a century ago that large-scale cosmic violence—two black holes colliding, for example—might send gravitational ripples through the universe like a stone disturbing the surface of a pond. In September physicists in the U.S. conclusively detected gravitational waves for the first time, again proving Einstein right. While it’s a safe assumption he wasn’t thinking about how building a wave observatory might lead to finding oil and gas, two physicists in Amsterdam have started a company betting they can.

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Greedy Shell Takes Redundant Employees Tax Breaks

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By John Donovan

Shell has resorted to taking tax breaks intended for redundant employees in order to help maintain its dividend and ensure that senior managers involved in the BG merger vanity project keep THEIR jobs.

Employees in the UK are taxed on redundancy payments over £30k.  However, HMRC provides an exemption for employees who have worked abroad allowing them to reclaim some or all of the tax.  Despite the fact that Shell UK redundancy terms have deteriorated over recent years and are now significantly less generous than their Dutch colleagues receive, Shell UK has decided that it is entitled to the overseas employment tax breaks not the employee.

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Shell is being prosecuted over emissions at Corrib gas refinery

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6 July 2016

THE ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION Agency has begun a prosecution against Shell for emissions at its Corrib gas refinery in Bellanaboy, Co Mayo.

The EPA has confirmed to TheJournal.ie that a summons was issued late last week, the culmination of an investigation into a flaring incident at the gas refinery on New Year’s Eve last.

The test flaring lasted 30 to 40 minutes from around 8.15pm that evening, two days after Alex White, the then minister for energy, gave final operating consent for the project.

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Shell Warns Of Further Job Cuts

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Screen Shot 2016-06-30 at 18.15.43By Irina Slav – Jul 05, 2016, 9:02 AM CDT

Shell may have to cut more jobs after laying off 12,500 people over the past year, CEO Ben van Beurden told The Telegraph. The new cuts would be prompted by a “continuous improvement drive,” he added.

Elaborating on what this drive would imply, Van Beurden noted jobs are becoming unnecessary as business operations get shut down, or positions being moved to another part of the world, or becoming redundant because of the drive for enhanced business efficiency.

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EPA is prosecuting Shell over Corrib gas flaring incident

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Lorna Siggins: 6 July 2016

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is prosecuting Shell E&P Ireland for breaching its emissions license at the Corrib gas refinery in north Mayo.

A summons was issued by the EPA late last week, The Irish Times has learned.

The prosecution relates to the EPA’s six-month investigation into an intense flaring incident at the refinery on December 31st, 2015.

Residents who had experience of test flaring over the past year had described as “frightening” the activity, which lasted for about 30 to 40 minutes, from about 8.15pm on New Year’s Eve.

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Shell seeks $2 billion from Aramco in Motiva joint venture breakup

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LONDON/HOUSTON | BY RON BOUSSO AND ERWIN SEBA: Mon Jul 4, 2016 3:25pm BST

Royal Dutch Shell (RDSa.L) has asked Saudi Aramco for up to $2 billion (£1.5 billion) as part of the breakup of their giant Motiva Enterprises refining joint venture in the United States, the latest stumbling point in a partnership fraught with tension.

The payment would be compensation for the Saudi company retaining a larger share of the nearly two decade-old JV. Its split was announced in March and is expected to be completed in October but disagreements over the payment could postpone the final date, sources close to the talks told Reuters.

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Shell job losses could be worsened by Brexit vote

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Oil giant Royal Dutch Shell has warned over the possibility of further job cuts.

The risk of more job losses is a result of uncertainty caused by the UK’s vote to quit the European Union, City A.M. understands.

Since last year Shell has slashed 12,500 jobs following the fall in oil prices and its tie-up with rival BG.

At the time of Shell’s initial takeover bid for BG Group last year it had 93,000 employees. Meanwhile, BG Group’s staff numbered around 5,000.

The deal came amid a collapse in oil prices, which fell from over $115 per barrel in the summer of 2014 to as low as $27 in February this year.

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Shell boss warns more job losses at the firm could “absolutely” happen

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Written by Mark Lammey – 03/07/2016 3:17 pm

The boss at Royal Dutch Shell (LON: RDSB) has reportedly said further job losses could “absolutely” take place at the company.

Shell chief executive Ben van Beurden said in an interview with the Sunday Telegraph cuts were always a possibility in the absence of large deals being struck.

Shell is axing about 12,500 roles this year due to a combination of low oil prices and its takeover of BG Group.

In May, the firm said the headcount for its North Sea operations would drop by 475 to 1,700 as part of the reductions.

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Chevron Halts Production At Gorgon Plant For Second Time This Year

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By Lincoln Brown – Jul 01, 2016, 3:18 PM CDT

For the second time this year, Chevron has stopped production at its Gorgon liquefied natural gas operation in Australia. The plant had to be evacuated after a gas leak was detected.

Chevron will make the necessary repairs to the plant before restarting production next week. The plant is a joint venture with ExxonMobil, Shell, Osaka Gas, Tokyo Gas and Chubu Electric Power. The terminal, which is also owned in part by Exxon Mobil and Royal Dutch Shell, will still load cargo during the interim.

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Brexit impact fades

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Gary Shilling for Bloomberg View suggested oil could drop to $10.

By Ed Crooks: Friday, July 1, 2016

Oil was one of the markets where the initial shock of the UK’s Brexit vote quickly faded. Brent crude was about $51 per barrel as the voters went to the polls last week, and today was trading at about $49.50. 

The 34 per cent rise in oil so far in 2016 has been its best start to a year since 2009, and helped commodities outperform other asset classes over the past six months.

The rise in prices has brightened the mood in Texas, according to a new survey carried out by the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas. It looks like being a good data source to watch in future.

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Royal Dutch Shell: This Is Another Catalyst

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Jun. 30, 2016 4:35 PM ET

Summary

  • Royal Dutch Shell witnessed weakness in the downstream segment last quarter due to lower refining margins, but this is about to change going forward.
  • There has been a rapid recovery in the refining marker margins, which has increased from around $9 a barrel to almost $17 a barrel within a short time.
  • Shell’s downstream performance will improve as refining margins in the second quarter averaged higher than the first quarter, with more upside expected going forward.
  • Driven by higher gasoline consumption and increasing utilization rates, refining margins will increase in the long run and act as a tailwind for Shell.
  • Shell’s structural improvements in the downstream, such as refinery integration in Louisiana, will allow it to lower costs and tap the end-market demand in a better manner.

In a recent article on Royal Dutch Shell (RDS.A, RDS.B), I had focused on how an improvement in the upstream business will bring about a recovery in the company’s overall financial performance. The upstream business was under a lot of pressure in the first quarter, and a rally in oil prices over the past few months will ease the pressure on the same as oil price realizations improve.

But, being an integrated oil and gas company, Shell’s performance will also be driven by its downstream segment, which was also under pressure last quarter as refining margins took a tumble. So, in this article, we will see how Shell’s downstream segment has done and how it might do going forward.

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Royal Dutch Shell says UK energy demand set to fall in future

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Jessica Morris is City A.M.’s industrials reporter. Thursday 30 June 2016 12:06am

The boss of oil major Royal Dutch Shell is set to say that energy demand in the UK will fall, while urging the government to help meet the world’s climate change goals.

Ben van Beurden, chief executive of Shell, will tell an audience at a forum in London later today: “In the UK … demand for energy is likely to level off as a result of, for example, energy efficiency.

“But this does not mean the UK can sit back and relax. It has a legally binding commitment to reduce its carbon emissions by 80 per cent by 2050, from the 1990 level.”

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Royal Dutch Shell plc and Gemfields plc: the perfect resources partnership?

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By Peter Stephens – Wednesday, 29 June, 2016

With the price of oil having made a storming comeback since earlier this year, Shell (LSE: RDSB) now has a much brighter future than it did just a few months ago. Clearly, there are still challenges ahead for the oil major, with there being a very real possibility that the price of oil could come under further pressure. That’s especially the case if Brexit acts as a negative catalyst on global economic growth and demand for oil falls yet further.

However, even in such a situation, Shell remains an appealing play due to its size and scale. In fact, Shell would be likely to benefit from such a situation, since it could likely outlast most of its sector peers and emerge in a stronger position with greater market share when oil eventually recovers.

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Why Royal Dutch Shell plc’s share price could collapse 60%!

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…with the fossil fuel giant battling a gigantic $70bn debt pile as well as a sickly revenues outlook, I believe asset sales alone may not be enough to keep the balance sheet afloat, and that dividend cuts could still be on the cards.

By Royston Wild – Monday, 27 June, 2016

Despite the volatility smashing financial markets on Friday — Britain’s decision to exit the European Union caused the FTSE 100 to shunt 3.2% lower — oil sector shares proved to be extraordinarily robust.

Indeed, fossil fuel giant Shell (LSE: RDSB) saw its share price slip just 0.3% on the day. This is despite wide risk-aversion pushing Brent back below $50 per barrel, the crude benchmark shedding 5% of its value to rest at $48.50.

Steady… for the moment

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Oil Prices and the Brexit: What Just Happened

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IMAGE SOURCE: GETTY IMAGES.

By Matthew Dilallo: 24 June 2016

What: Crude prices tumbled on Friday after Britain’s stunning decision to leave the European Union. By mid-afternoon, oil was down 4.5% and back below $50 a barrel. The sell-off washed over into oil stocks, with British giants BP (NYSE:BP) and Royal Dutch Shell (NYSE:RDS-A)(NYSE:RDS-B) both following crude downward by more than 5% as of 12:30 p.m. EDT.

Those moves, however, were tame compared to the sell-offs of other European oil stocks, with Statoil (NYSE:STO) and Total (NYSE:TOT) down nearly 6% and 9%, respectively. Even large independent U.S. oil companies were taking it on the chin, with ConocoPhillips (NYSE:COP) just one among the many oil stocks sliding in parallel with the price of crude.

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Dutch government lowers Groningen gas output cap to 24 bcm

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Reuters: Friday, June 24, 2016

THE HAGUE, June 24 The Dutch government said on Friday it would lower the cap on production at the Groningen gas field, which has supplied up to 10 percent of European demand, to 24 billion cubic metres a year for the next five years.

The decision to lower the ceiling from 27 bcm, beginning on Oct. 1, follows a recommendation by the Dutch National Mines Inspectorate.

The Dutch government has been steadily reducing output at Groningen, prompted by a spate of earthquakes linked to production that caused extensive property damage in the northern province.

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The sustainability of Royal Dutch Shell’s dividend

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It is not quite true to say that the stock market is relying on the Royal Dutch Shell dividend, but since the oil company accounts for over a tenth of the total dividends paid by UK companies, a cut would be quite a shock. The shock would be terminal for Ben van Beurden, since the Shell CEO would have broken the promise made during the takeover of BG Group.

FULL FT ARTICLE

Royal Dutch Shell Has Served Notice – The Deepwater Drillers Are In Big Trouble

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June 23, 2016

Screen Shot 2016-05-21 at 10.18.28Summary

  • Eighteen months ago Shell was considering exiting shale plays and focusing on its deepwater and LNG opportunities.
  • Shell’s recent analyst day presentations revealed a company that is shifting its long term focus towards shale.
  • We think that going forward the offshore drilling rig companies have major long term challenges and investors need to be aware that pre-crash cash flows aren’t coming back.

For the small sliver of global oil production that U.S shale oil actually represents it certainly has been a disruptive force.

Total shale production (there is no significant amount outside of the United States) is currently somewhere around 4.5 million barrels per day.

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That is not much more than four percent of total current production which checks in at over 96 million barrels per day.

After having a look at Shell’s (NYSE:RDS.A) 2016 capital markets day presentation we think shale oil is going to become even more disruptive going forward for a select group of companies.

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Shell’s Ambitious Plan To Topple Exxon

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By Rakesh Upadhyay – Jun 22, 2016, 5:17 PM CDT

Ben Van Beurden, Chief Executive Officer of Royal Dutch Shell has laid out an ambitious plan to overtake ExxonMobil as the number one oil company in the world.

Prior to the 1990s, Shell was the leader in total shareholder returns, however, its rivals went on a deal-making spree to gain the lead, while Shell shied away from making any acquisitions. Now, Mr. Beurden believes that Shell will be able to regain its lost glory post the acquisition of the BG group.

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Shell works to simplify organization to compete with independents

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By Mella McEwen [email protected]: 22 June 2016

Too big. Too rigid. Not nimble enough.

Those are reasons why integrated oil companies could have a difficult time competing with independents in the unconventional shale plays that have led to a resurgence in the nation’s oil and gas industry.

Royal Dutch Shell, however, disagrees with that reasoning and this week held an event to reaffirm its commitment to the shales business, including its holdings in the Permian Basin.

Shell officials discussed how its recent $70 billion acquisition of the BG Group has impacted its outlook. The event was a mixer at Shell’s Drilling Automation & Remote Technology (DART) Center located on its Houston campus and was webcast and available by telephone.

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Dutch Winter Gas Rises to Six-Month High Before Output Decision

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Screen Shot 2016-06-22 at 10.28.33Netherlands may decide on Groningen field production on Friday

By Rob VerdonckFred Pals: June 22, 2016 – 11:17 AM BST

Dutch natural gas advanced to the highest since December before a government decision on production from Europe’s biggest field expected on Friday.

The winter contract, for the six months from October, gained as much as 5.1 percent, according to broker data compiled by Bloomberg. Dutch Economy Minister Henk Kamp expects the government to decide on output from the Groningen field on Friday, the ANP news agency reported late Tuesday after De Telegraaf newspaper said gas extraction linked to earthquakes would be curbed by another 11 percent.

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Dutch agency calls for further cut in Groningen gas production

Screen Shot 2016-06-22 at 10.29.52The agency declined to comment.

The Cabinet is expected to announce its production plans for the field for the period after Oct. 1, 2016 on Friday, after several cuts in the past year have left it at the rate of 27 bcm on an annualized basis.

The final decision will be based on the recommendations from the agency, Groningen’s operator NAM, a joint venture of Royal Dutch Shell and Exxon, and six other parties.

A majority of lawmakers Dutch parliament have called for production to be cut as far as possible to reduce earthquakes in the northern province caused by the gas extraction.

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Russia’s Gazprom eyes asset swap deals with Shell, OMV by year-end

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ST PETERSBURG, RUSSIA | BY DENIS PINCHUK AND DMITRY ZHDANNIKOVMon Jun 20, 2016 8:29am EDT

Russia’s state-controlled gas giant Gazprom (GAZP.MM) could gain control over some of the assets that Shell (RDSa.L) acquired earlier this year from BG group, a senior Gazprom executive said in an interview.

Gazprom’s Deputy Chief Executive Alexander Medvedev said the BG holdings could be included in an asset swap deal between Gazprom and Shell that was announced last year. He did not say what the BG holdings were or where they were located.

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Report: Shell’s Martinez refinery could be sold

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By Sam Richards , [email protected]

Screen Shot 2016-05-21 at 10.18.28MARTINEZ — Two published reports Friday say the Shell Martinez Refinery is up for sale, prompted by what are expected to be crude oil prices rising faster than gas prices at the pump.

The reports, one of them from the international news agency Reuters, say the Netherlands-based global energy company Royal Dutch Shell is looking to shed some of its smaller, less profitable refineries ahead of the anticipated price hike for crude.

The Reuters story said Shell and at least three other major oil companies, including San Ramon-based Chevron, have seen dropping profit margins from their refining operations since a peak in 2015 and want to shed some lower-profit operations before crude oil prices rise much further from recent low levels.

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Gazprom and Shell committed to broader cooperation in LNG sector

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Gazprom and Shell committed to broader cooperation in LNG sector

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Greenpeace image relating to Shell/Russia Arctic Drilling Plans

June 16, 2016, 17:30

A working meeting between Alexey Miller, Chairman of the Gazprom Management Committee, and Ben van Beurden, Chief Executive Officer of Shell, took place today at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum 2016.

The parties discussed the progress of and prospects for strategic cooperation in the LNG sector, paying particular attention to the construction project for the third production train of the LNG plant on Sakhalin Island (Sakhalin II project). Design and FEED documentation are currently being prepared for the new production train.

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Western leaders, CEOs visit Russia amid sanctions fatigue

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Shell CEO Ben van Beurden bows to President Putin of Russia.

NATALIYA VASILYEVA, ASSOCIATED PRESS: June 15, 2016 Updated: June 16, 2016 1:29pm

Following a meeting with Putin, Royal Dutch Shell’s CEO Ben van Beurden and state-owned gas giant Gazprom announced plans to build an LNG plant in Russia together. France’s Total is working with Russia’s largely private gas producer on a liquefied natural gas project.

The fact that the CEOs of top American companies have in a sense defied their government shows that they put their business interests before any political considerations, analysts say.

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Gazprom, Shell to invest $13 bln in projects in Russia – Russian Energy Minister

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Shell CEO Ben van Beurden bows to Russian President Putin at the Kremlin: April 2014

Thu Jun 16, 2016

ST PETERSBURG, Russia, June 16 (Reuters) – Energy major Shell and Russia’s gas major Gazprom will jointly invest $13 billion in three projects in Russia, Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak said on Thursday.

Novak said that Shell would take part in the development of Gazprom’s Yuzhno-Kirinskoye gas field offshore Russia’s Sakhalin island in the Pacific.

The two companies will also jointly invest in the Baltic Sea Liquefied Natural Gas plant and in the Sakhalin-2 LNG plant expansion.

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Gazprom, Shell sign memo on Baltic LNG project

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Shell CEO Ben van Beurden bows to President Putin

Thu Jun 16, 2016 8:11am EDT

Gazprom and Shell signed on Thursday a memorandum of understanding on construction of a liquefied natural gas (LNG) plant on the Russian coast of the Baltic Sea.

The memorandum says the companies will look into possibilities of building the LNG plant in the port of Ust-Luga with an annual capacity of 10 million tonnes.

Gazprom and Shell are already partners in Russia’s only LNG plant on the Pacific island of Sakhalin which has a capacity of 10 million tonnes per year.

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Shell & Gazprom agree Baltic LNG project

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Screen Shot 2016-05-21 at 10.18.2816 June 2016 

Russia’s Gazprom and Anglo-Dutch energy major Shell have inked a letter of understanding to begin a liquefied natural gas project at the Russian port of Ust-Luga on the Baltic Sea.

CEOs Aleksey Miller and Ben van Beurden signed the agreement at the 20th International Economic Forum in St. Petersburg.

The project aims to diversify Gazprom’s LNG sales operations and to boost its LNG portfolio.

The enterprise will reportedly include a two-train LNG plant as well as a pipeline connected to the Gazprom network. The Baltic LNG Plant will have a capacity of about 10 million tons of gas annually with an option to expand to 15 million tons. The new plant will start operating in December 2021.

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