Seadrill FVE redusert, offshore oljeboring utsatt i vanskelig oljemarked

Det er nesten ingen steder å finne ly for oljeprisnedgangen, men offshore boring har blandt de verste fundamentale forholdene i energisektoren.

Stephen Simko, CFA 21.01.2016 | 10:49

There is almost nowhere to find shelter in oil and gas during the current downturn, but no subsector faces more challenging fundamentals than offshore drilling. The years in the mid-2000s, when offshore oil and gas was the key growth area for the oil industry, led to the belief that the international oil companies and Petrobras would have an ever-growing need of new deep-water rigs, given the billions of barrels of presalt oil that they discovered in Brazil. This has turned out to be a disastrous miscalculation, given the emergence of U.S. shale, and more recently, rising OPEC onshore production and financial turmoil in Brazil.

For offshore drillers, this means that the market for offshore rigs is now in one of the most challenging periods of its entire existence. Given the quantity of new rigs that have been built or will enter the market in 2015-16, there are simply far too many offshore rigs on the market given the very limited appetite for capital-intensive projects in the industry. While rising oil prices and falling offshore costs can help going forward, these alone are not enough. The offshore rig fleet also needs a major rationalization--60-100 rigs need to be permanently taken off the market for a full rebalancing to occur. The one silver lining is rig contracts were signed prior to crude prices collapsing, which will provide companies with a lifeline that should allow most of the major firms to weather the storm. But as more and more rig contracts roll off, the day rates of $500,000-plus per day appear to be off the table for the rest of the decade, if not longer.

Given the huge secular headwinds facing offshore drilling from overcapacity and the emergence of U.S. tight oil, we currently believe the risk/reward proposition is far less attractive than elsewhere in energy. While this gives drillers plenty of leverage should crude prices recover faster than expected, there's a great chance these stocks are actually value traps even after their recent falls.

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Om forfatteren

Stephen Simko, CFA  Stephen Simko, CFA, is a senior stock analyst on the Technology Team.

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