WTI $35.70 -$1.09, Brent $37.69 -98c, Diff $1.99 +8c, NG $2.00 +4c

Oil price

Same old, same old, as stories weakening the oil price erode confidence ahead of the potential freeze. Yesterday it was the turn of ship brokers who reported that the Saudis were doing their utmost to slow down Iranian exports by not allowing them in their waters, Bahrain joined the club and if Aramco is a client, so did you…

Analysts expect another week of stock builds come the API and EIA, around 3.3m barrels is the guess but unlikely to be good news. Gasoline is up at $2.08 a gallon and demand continues so refinery rates may still be high. Finally my guess was right before Easter as hedgies cut their long positions in the week to March 29th, looked like a one way ticket to me too.


Various updates from PCI and Worldview in the last 24 hours, on the operational front the news is good, AT-10 came in well, as was to be expected and the next stop is AT-13. On the Worldview front the Examinership case was adjourned yesterday and is now set for Friday, it may just be a coincidence but market rumours yesterday suggested that they had sold some of the debt they recently acquired. What a difference a day makes as one of the worlds biggest banks finds it has been associated with such odour…

Thalassa Holdings

Thalassa has always been a favourite company of mine from a technical and management point of view, statements from the Chairman Duncan Soukup are invariably interesting and today’s is no exception. It was good to be able to sneak a few minutes with him to get an idea of how the market is going on a local and international level. Read the statement and he is still of the view that debt is too high and unsustainable in the industry which he likens to the mortgage market in the US, probably fairly. At local level Thalassa actually had a very good year, they had battened down the hatches so that revenue was up 21.6%, gross profit up 43% and margins up 17.6% to 50.1%. However, dreaded impairments led to a loss of $12.3m, a pretty reasonable performance under the circumstances. With cash of $20.3m and no debt the company is set fair, it completed four surveys for Statoil last year and the TGS-NOPEC seismic services contract was completed, WGP had a record year. Saying that the climate is challenging but with potential is about as good as it gets from Mr Soukup so I will take that.

Sound Energy

Sound has announced that it has received $1.1m in cash from Ophir with regard to the Bangkanai licence that it used to own in Indonesia. Always welcome a few bucks in the bank from a discontinued operation and with plenty of excitement due from the current portfolio times remain most interesting for Sound.


It’s often the case when you install $54bn worth of kit offshore, the blooming propane refrigerant circuit goes down on Train 1, this is what has happened down at Gorgon and Chevron has ‘temporarily’ closed in production…

Still in Australia, Wood Group has announced the acquisition of SVT, an engineering consultancy based in Perth. No size is given so I imagine it is relatively modest and will become part of WG Kenny.

And finally…

A bit thin on the ground ahead of the Masters and Aintree later in the week but Chelski have appointed Antonio Conte as their new manager, starting next season. Clearly a top coach for clubs and country, Conte comes with a record as being a strict disciplinarian and so there may be sparks flying although if John Terry has left by then the job suddenly becomes that much easier.

Finally it was good to hear that Nick Blackwell had, apparently successfully, come out of his coma at the weekend.