US oil production appears to be bottoming, but investors seeking to profit in an environment where prices will likely range between $40 and $60 per barrel must pay attention to basin-specific trends as well as companies' balance sheets and acreage quality.
After plunging almost 50 percent from early May 2015 to mid-February 2016, the Alerian MLP Index has defied the critics and torched slow-to-react short sellers by surging 45 percent since its nadir. But the easy money has been made: Investors must now focus on which names are best-positioned to grow in an environment where energy prices remain lower for longer.
Activity levels and pricing for oil-field services and equipment will likely remain under pressure in the US onshore market this year, with early 2017 bringing a bit of a recovery on both scores. But a return to the levels witnessed during the boom years appears unlikely, especially if Saudi Arabia opts to tap some of its spare capacity to take market share and keep oil prices in check.
Sensationalist predictions about oil prices have become all the rage over the past two months, but they won't necessarily help investors make money. We explain our outlook for crude-oil prices and why a buying opportunity may be around the corner.
However, the universe of energy stocks that meet our buying criteria is relatively small; don’t misconstrue this call as open season to buy energy stocks. Not every company has the potential to outperform, let alone survive.
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