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THE WALL STREET JOURNAL: Oil News Roundup: February 2, 2007 5:50 p.m.

Crude-oil futures ended the week with a gain of more than 6% as expectations that a cold snap in the northeastern U.S. will continue into February, political tension in key oil-producing countries and prospects for further energy-demand growth lifted prices past $59 a barrel.

Here is Friday’s roundup of oil and energy news:

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STILL NOT A BAD YEAR: Big Oil wrapped up its earnings season with a batch of quarterly declines, but still managed to dust off a late downturn in commodity prices to book some of the largest annual profits in U.S. history. The nation’s three biggest oil companies, Exxon Mobil, Chevron and ConocoPhillips, together churned a fourth-quarter profit of $72 billion on revenue of $771 billion. But there were ample signs that the industry is unlikely to follow up 2006 with yet another round of record-breaking numbers as it struggles to rein in costs and produce more oil in a tougher and lower price environment.

•Chevron Profit Falls: Chevron said its net income fell 8.9% in the fourth quarter as U.S. natural gas prices came down from the heights produced by 2005 hurricanes.

•Endesa Bidding Heats Up: German utility E.On’s decision to up its final bid for Endesa at the last minute by 12% could clinch the 41-billion-euro ($53.16 billion) acquisition and add momentum to the continuing consolidation that is sweeping the European power sector ahead of full liberalization this summer.

•Anadarko to Sell Properties: Anadarko Petroleum said it agreed to sell natural gas properties in Oklahoma and Texas to Exco Resources Inc. for $860 million, as it moves to cut debt amassed in its acquisitions last summer of Kerr-McGee Corp. and Western Gas Resources Inc.

•Burning Barge: Crews extinguished a burning barge, hours after it struck a railroad bridge, erupted into flames and drifted for miles down the Mississippi River, apparently spilling oil.

•Cyprus/Turkey Feud Continues: Cyprus accused Turkey of behaving like a pirate over an oil exploration dispute that has threatened to revive tension on the divided island.

•Terror-Free Oil: A U.S. group has founded a new chain of gas stations it guarantees will sell products made solely from “terror-free oil,” Canada’s City News reports.

•Crowded Trade: For the first two weeks of the year, investors were running away from energy stocks. Since then, they’ve been running back. But the sector may already be too crowded, MarketBeat reports.

•Groundhog Day’s Inconvenient Truth: Could Punxsutawney Phil’s failure to see his shadow mean plunging oil prices? Maybe, maybe not, MarketBeat reports.

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1 Comment on “THE WALL STREET JOURNAL: Oil News Roundup: February 2, 2007 5:50 p.m.”

  1. #1 Mark Roberts
    on Feb 3rd, 2007 at 13:47

    FYI – You can access those Wall Street Journal articles for free with a netpass from: http://news.congoo.com

    My daily free tip!

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