The bad news for stocks like Exxon Mobil (XOM) is that so much natural gas is being pulled out of the ground in the United States that the industry might burst its own bubble. In fact, The Wall Street Journal reports that natural gas prices are at their lowest in ten years, so investors might be better off looking for shares in companies that buy natural gas, rather than those that try to sell it.
However, it is not all gloom and doom for the natural gas industry. In the Middle East, the Russian energy giant Gazprom (OGZPY.PK) is proposing a $1.5 billion pipeline between Iran and Pakistan. However, this endeavor will not be open to international bidding, so Exxon Mobil and others will not have a chance to even consider getting involved. It looks to me like the natural gas market might be slipping out of American corporations’ hands, unless they can get their act together and stop over-producing at home.
Exxon Mobil’s stock value has been bouncing around since 2012 hit, but the overall trend is pretty much a flatline. At the same time, smaller companies like Anadarko Petroleum (APC) are continuing to grow. Anadarko is getting ready to drill 4,000 new natural gas wells in the Uinta Basin in Utah, which many are heralding as a step towards clean energy, although this view flies in the face of evidence that natural gas drilling poisons ground water. To continue reading, click here.