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Oil and Gas Scene Newsletter

The Oil and Gas Scene newsletter contains pertinent industry and market information written by our professional staff of certified landmen, registered geologist, certified mineral managers, revenue specialists, division order and title analysts, licensed real estate agents, and title attorney.  

  

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Oil and Gas Scene - 2017 Summer
Outlook on Energy Prices
by David Smith, CPL, Senior Vice President - Oil and Gas Division
Over the past two and a half years, the energy industry had been in a downward spiral due to low commodity prices. The industry hit bottom in the middle of 2016 with crude oil prices dropping to $26/bbl, over 250,000 jobs lost, 125+ independent operators filing bankruptcy, and rig counts hitting historic lows...
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Oil and Gas Scene - 2016 Fall
Charitable Opportunities with Oil and Gas Rights
by Scott Porterfield, Business Development Manager - Northeast Division
From small businesses to large corporations, the need to increase revenue, manage risk, and help the bottom line has never been greater. Businesses are exploring every avenue to increase revenue. The same holds true for non-profit entities and charities...
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Oil and Gas Scene - 2016 Summer
Bankruptcy in Oil and Gas Industry
by Ethan McMilan, Mineral Management Specialist
Inundated with energy company bankruptcy notices? What does it mean for your royalty payments? Due to the slump in crude oil and natural gas prices in 2015-2016, many oil and gas companies have opted for relief under Chapter 11 of the United States Bankruptcy Code...
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Oil and Gas Scene - 2015 Summer
Rain Clouds or Silver Lining
by David Smith, Senior Vice President - Oil and Gas Management
Record rains in Oklahoma, Texas, Colorado, Nebraska, and Arkansas have officially ended a multi-year drought and that is the “Silver Lining”. Many people often look for a silver lining in challenging times. Is the glass half full, or half empty attitude...
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Oil and Gas Scene - 2015 Spring
Surface Minerals...A Natural Partnership
by Melody Martinez, CPL, Assistant Vice President
When a ranch has been in a family for more than one generation, it tends to be more than just a ranch. These properties have special heartstrings attached to them, and rightfully so! Whether the family is still ranching, the property is leased for cattle grazing, crops, or hunting, or the family uses it for recreation, these ranches have far more than just monetary value.
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Oil and Gas Scene - 2015 Winter
The Economics of Oil and Gas in Appalachia
by Wes Turiano, Oil and Gas Manager - Northeast Unit
The Marcellus and Utica Shale plays are the geographically largest and most prolific oil and gas plays in the United States. Having celebrated its tenth anniversary of the first successful producing well, the Marcellus Shale has continually defied expectations and demonstrated repeated success within the industry. New successes have challenges and growing pains. The most significant growing pains in Appalachia are transportation infrastructure and commodity pricing.
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Oil and Gas Scene - 2014 Summer
You Received an Offer to Lease Your Minerals, Now What?
by Terry Young, Vice President
The energy industry in our country is experiencing a continued boom not seen in decades. From drilling techniques to loosen tightly trapped gas reserves to oil production in areas never imagined, our country’s energy independence is within sight. Where does this complicated process begin? The mineral owner agrees to allow exploration by agreement, the oil and gas lease.

The thought of newly discovered oil and gas income can cause many owners of minerals to become anxious and act in haste. The following are insights from professional mineral managers for dealing with the lease offer.
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Oil and Gas Scene - 2013 Fall
It is Football Season Again
by David Smith, Vice President
Just as we have the political football being kicked around again in Washington, DC, over ObamaCare, raising the debt ceiling, and shutting down the non-essential parts of the federal government, so we have the gasoline prices being kicked around at the gas pump across the country. Motorists are asking why we see such ups and downs in the price of gasoline. One day last month in Tulsa, Oklahoma, we saw an 18 cent per gallon increase in the price overnight. Talk about sticker shock!
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Oil and Gas Scene - 2013 Spring
Flying Low on Gas
by David Smith, Vice President - Oil and Gas Management
As a pilot, I occasionally need to fly at a lower altitude below an overcast cloud layer. A heavy lower layer of clouds can limit pilots to fly by visual flight rules at a lower flight level. We often look for smooth air for our passengers and more favorable winds aloft for a faster trip. We call this being stuck on the deck. This means we are going to have a slow and rough flight because we are forced to a lower altitude.

Natural gas prices “are stuck on the deck” as well. This has created a slow and bumpy ride for many exploration and production companies that have large natural gas holdings. Back in 2008, natural gas prices skyrocketed to $13 per thousand cubic feet and then hit the deck in 2009 at $2. The prices have continued at low levels for the past three years, reaching the incredible price of $1.82 a year ago and now sits at just over $4 per thousand cubic feet.
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Oil and Gas Scene - 2012 Summer
Bonus Rates Rise
by David Smith, Vice President - Oil and Gas Management
One would think that with oil prices down 30% since February and natural gas prices down 40% from a year ago that oil and gas lease bonus amounts would be down, but not so. Leasing activity remains very good and, as the chart below depicts, lease bonus dollars per acre continue to climb, especially in the shale areas of these states.

Farmers National Company (FNC) recently surveyed nationwide oil and gas leasing activity for the first quarter of 2012 and compared it to the first quarter of 2011. As you can see, there are a number of states that continue to have exceptional lease bonus amounts paid. While dry gas prospects have dropped off the chart, oil and high-liquids content areas are still seeing very high lease bonus prices in the heart of the drilling fairway.
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