One of the most talked-about global trends in recent years has been the rapid growth in population. As emerging markets around the world enter periods of robust growth, their populations have also been on the rise. Though a growing worldwide population will certainly cause a number of issues, it will also present commodity investors with a fair amount of opportunities, as some hard assets represent a great way to profit from the current trend [for more commodity news and analysis subscribe to our free newsletter].
Crude oil has been among the worst-performing commodities this year as hefty production has combined with a number of other factors to send the fossil fuel lower. That being said, a number of bellwether oil firms will be detailing their most recent quarter’s earnings this week, as investors are anxious to see how lower prices have impacted bottom-line returns. Below, we outline five of the biggest oil firms to report earnings this week, and commodity investors should watch them closely [for more oil news and analysis subscribe to our free newsletter].
The U.S. has long dominated crude oil consumption around the world, as the insatiable need for the fossil fuel has long powered the economy. According to EIA estimates, the U.S. gobbles up around 18.9 million barrels of oil each day, or about 7 billion per year, the highest such figures in the world. While the nation may be close to supporting itself in terms of domestic oil production, it still will not change the fact that the U.S. relies more heavily on crude than any other country in the world [for more oil news subscribe to our free newsletter].
While certain global producers are showing signs of slower growth, the United States is still on track to overtake Saudi Arabia and Russia to become the world’s largest oil producer in the next few years. As such, the U.S. energy boom has encouraged domestic companies to ramp up production and explore new opportunities both at home and around the globe [for more commodity news and analysis subscribe to our free newsletter].
Big oil firms often come under fire for receiving everything from favorable tax treatment to government subsidies to conduct their business. And now it appears that another factor can be added to that list, as Representative Edward Markey of Massachusetts has begun pushing for a legislation change. The laws that he seeks to amend favor drilling royalties for some of the biggest names in the industry, with over 100 companies taking advantage of the policy [for more oil news and analysis subscribe to our free newsletter].
The global oil and gas industry is enormous, and serving the endless global appetite for oil and gas has propelled many companies into the realm of the mega-caps. Were they independent entities, the revenues of companies like Exxon Mobil (XOM), BP (BP) and Royal Dutch Shell (RDS.A) would be such that they’d be among the 30-largest countries by GDP. Not surprisingly, that makes them highly significant stocks as well [for more oil and gas news and analysis subscribe to our free newsletter].
The oil and gas industry has been dramatically expanding over the past few years, particularly in the United States and emerging markets. In fact, the U.S. is expected to overtake Saudi Arabia and Russia to become the world’s largest oil producer by the second half of this decade, according to the International Energy Agency. One of the leading names on the oil front has long been Chevron (CVX), which is one of the largest crude producers in the U.S. [for more oil & gas news subscribe to our free newsletter].
As we enter the heart of earnings season, all eyes are fixated on bellwether firms and how they have fared over the most recent quarter. The coming week will be a big one for the crude oil industry, as the vast majority of leading oil producers will report in the coming five-day stretch. Crude oil has been under a microscope since experiencing downward pressure in the latter part of 2012. Since then, the commodity has rallied nearly 11%, which may have a big impact on the underlying revenues of big oil [for more oil news and analysis subscribe to our free newsletter].
Forget Texas, California may be set to lead the United States when it comes to oil production and potential. The Monterey Shale, which stretches from Los Angeles to San Francisco, is estimated to contain approximately 400 billion barrels of oil. The United States consumes just under 19 million barrels of oil on a daily basis meaning that the Monterey reserves has the potential to meet the nation’s needs for over 57 years. Of course, recovering that oil will prove to be something of a struggle [for more oil news and analysis subscribe to our free newsletter].
Since the 2008 recession, U.S. oil production has come roaring back. As 2013 opened, the United States topped seven million barrels per day in production for the first time in nearly 20 years. This is largely thanks to a development in technologies like fracking as well as more pipelines distributing the energy resource around the nation. Experts now predict that the United States will top Saudi Arabia’s oil production by 2020. That would make the United States both the largest producer and consumer of this fossil fuel in the world [for more crude oil news and analysis subscribe to our free newsletter].