Does #Exxon Know The Value of Its Assets?

by Matthew Johnson

In recent months, ExxonMobil has been under fire after investigative reporters claimed the oil and gas giant knew about risks associated with climate change since at least the 1970s and hid that knowledge from the public.  Leading environmental groups called for the company to be prosecuted the way tobacco companies were prosecuted for hiding Smoking risks.  Mainstream politicians like Hillary Clinton joined in and New York Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman launched an investigation.  In March 2016, attorneys general from 18 jurisdictions announced they are now part of his effort. In September 2016, the Wall Street Journal reported that AG Schneiderman had changed his aim and is now looking more closely at how Exxon values its assets.  The federal government has also launched a similar effort.

In addition to climate questions, the government wants to know if Exxon is hiding the damage it has suffered from low oil prices.  As our proprietary data shows, frac jobs decreased 50% from Q42015 to Q12015, and that foretold a corresponding drop in production and cash flow.  ONE THING TO NOTE IS THAT PRIMARY VISION’S DATA FOCUSES ON NORTH AMERICAN FRAC’ING AND THE MAJORITY OF EXXON’S BUSINESS IS INTERNATIONAL/OFFSHORE.

The Good:

First off, ExxonMobil is a pillar of American industry that traces its lineage back to the Standard Oil Trust that dominated world oil markets in the late 1800s.  The company has survived a lot of legal issues in its past, and when crude markets rebalance (or if OPEC is able to boost oil prices) then Exxon’s troubles may disappear.
This particular controversy has to do with the process executives use to sign off on calling reserves “proven” after reviewing data from engineers, geophysicists, and geologists.  Dropping oil prices and costly regulations reduce the value of these “proven” resources.  Most companies will write down that lost value, but write-downs reduce profits.  Exxon is notorious for refusing write-downs.  Exxon CEO Rex Tillerson sees this aversion as a good part of the company’s culture.  He says it avoids write-downs by placing a high burden on executives to ensure that projects can work at low prices.  Those executives will not be “bailed out” by having their projects written down in a bad market.

One thing that helps make this strategy viable for Exxon is that its operations are heavily centered in areas that continue to be economic at current prices.  In particular, this means the Permian Basin in Texas, and through it subsidiary XTO Energy the company also reaches the Williston Basin in North Dakota.  Our data shows these to be the most popular locations for frac jobs in recent years.

The Bad:

The flip side here is that Exxon could be seen as lying about the cost of climate or its losses associated with low oil prices.  The company has outperformed many of its rivals since oil prices began to drop in 2014, but it has lost money in its U.S. drilling business for the past six quarters.  By failing to admit that their reserves had lost value, Exxon was able to report higher earnings than rivals that made significant write-downs.  Some may say the company inflated its earnings to boost its stock price.

The Ugly:

Exxon is now facing two different investigations with overlapping aims.  First, New York AG Schneiderman and his coalition are pursuing allegations of fraud related to climate change.  AG Schneiderman also appears to be independently reviewing Exxon’s practices related to writing down assets and accounting for the cost of climate change.  Second, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission has now opened up an inquiry into the same issues of write-downs and climate accounting.

Conclusion:

Exxon has been on the attack against AG Schneiderman and what the company views as a politically-motivated attack, but Exxon has said the SEC is the “appropriate entity” to look into these matters.  Exxon is proud of its practices and it will likely hold up against government scrutiny as it has for decades.  History suggests commodity prices will rise again, and when they do Exxon’s troubles will seem minor.  Moreover, these investigations were just a chink in Exxon’s armor.  Stock prices took only a small dip after the SEC investigation was announced, and analysts like The Street Ratings still consider the stock a “hold” as the company is in a solid financial position despite weak cash flow and poor profit margins.

sources:

Disclaimer
The data presented above has a margin of error of 5-8% as a result of E&P and/or service company errors or incorrect data filings. Neither the information, nor any opinion contained in this site constitutes a solicitation or offer by Primary Vision or its affiliates to buy or sell any securities, futures, options or other financial instruments or provide any investment advice or service.

Pioneer’s A+ game might match OPEC

PXD-PVby Matthew Johnson

Recently, we reviewed some pressure pumpers and even took a stab at Eog Resources (EOG: $91), often called the Apple ($108.27) of U.S. shale.  If Eog Resources is the Apple of U.S. Shale then is Pioneer (PXD: $224) the Uber-equivalent?  Their CEO, Scott Sheffield, stated last week that their operating costs in the Permian Basin were close to $2 per BOE. Some have disputed this by looking deeper into their financials.  Let’s take a look at what we’re good at which is frac jobs and frac spreads.

We’ve reported 440 frac jobs since the beginning of 2015 running through Q1 2016.  PXD has shown a steady flow of work.

FSC Charts for PXD - comparisonFSC Charts for PXD - month by month

Pioneer is vertically integrated, so they do a lot of their own pressure pumping. However, we are tracking some activity with Halliburton (HAL: $43.84), Baker Hughes (BHI: $49.76) and Schlumberger (SLB: $81.20) in the last 18 months.

Here’s their top ten frac jobs by county since January of 2015:

FSC Charts for PXD - top 10 countiesThe majority of their activity takes place in Midland (Permian), Upton (Permian) and Karnes (Eagle Ford) counties.

Pioneer has been a technological leader in many aspects of frac’ing including well selection, pressure pumping  and refrac’ing.  The inclusion of their own pressure pumping team gives them a logistical and financial advantage over 90% of E&Ps in the United States.  Even if their CEO is exaggerating, it appears as their operational costs have shined a light on investors (their stock is up 40% since January of this year) and other shale companies that the impossible is, in fact, possible.  If OPEC’s goal was to knock U.S. shale offline they may have won some battles, but companies like pxd are tenacious.  The war is far from over.

sources:
Arthur Berman at oilprice.comPioneers $2 Operating Costs: Fact or Fiction?
Rachel Aldrich at The StreetPioneer Natural Resources Stock is the ‘Chart of the Day‘”
Nicholas Chapman at Market RealistAnalyzing Pioneer Natural Resources Q216 Earnings

Disclaimer
The data presented above has a margin of error of 5-8% as a result of E&P and/or service company errors or incorrect data filings. Neither the information, nor any opinion contained in this site constitutes a solicitation or offer by Primary Vision or its affiliates to buy or sell any securities, futures, options or other financial instruments or provide any investment advice or service.

The End is the Beginning for Baker Hughes

The-End-Is-the-Beginning-Baker-Hughes-Primary-Vision-Blog-7-29-2016by Matt Johnson

Over the last week or so we’ve covered the Q2 results for Halliburton (HAL: $42.77), Schlumberger (SLB: $79.05) focusing on the good, the bad, the ugly and accompanying activity measurements. Today we will center in on Baker Hughes (BHI: $46.05) which reported its Q2 results on July 28th, 2016.

Just a reminder that, Primary Vision focuses on frac data and therefore will highlight (and probably lowlight) BHIs pressure pumping activity.

The Good: As a result of the $3.5b breakup fee paid by HAL, BHI has already earmarked a 1.5b share buyback program and $1b in debt repayments. Due to recent job cuts and other internal restructuring they’re expecting their margins to improve throughout the rest of 2016.

Water Volume – BHI was #3 in water usage in 2013 and 2014.  They slipped to #4 in 2015 and round out 5th place, so far, in 2016. Just an fyi: The running order of water usage from 2013 to current (from 1st to 5th place): HAL, SLB, FTS International, Pioneer Natural Resources (PXD: $157.54) & BHI (this water usage list only has Pressure pumpers, and while PXD is known as an operator they’re also vertically integrated with their own frac spreads which enables them to control costs on a whole other level.  Read here to learn more).

Proppant Volume – BHI had the 2nd highest proppant mass from 2013 to 2015.  2016 numbers are still a bit murky.

Total Number of Frac Jobs: In 2015, BHI held second place with 1,643 frac jobs.  Through one quarter of data they’ve slipped to 3rd place.  In 2016, HAL holds on to first place, one can only wonder if BHI will ever re-gain enough market share to move back to #2. See the charts below that highlights BHIs frac jobs over the last 5 quarters.

BHI comparison chart

The Bad: While the merger breakup resulted in a $3.5b payout from HAL, BHI lost crucial market share in the oilfield services space.  Revenue fell 39% to $2.3b and BHI failed to cut costs in line with their competitors.

The Ugly: BHI has laid off ~23,000 people since the beginning of 2015.  One might wonder who really suffered as a result of the failed merger.

We took a deeper look into our database of frac jobs (~120k jobs in the U.S. over the last 6 years) to Show both the Frac jobs and Frac Spreads for Baker Hughes.

BHI frac jobs month by month

Note: The Q2 2016 data is incomplete as there is a lag in the data of ~100 days

BHI forecasting chart

Note: There is a lag in the data of about ~100 days. We continue to capture new data every single day (Running Frac Spreads = blue) and compliment the data lag with our custom forecasting algorithm (Forecast = orange). If you click on the chart you will better be able to see the chart labels.

Parting Thoughts:

BHI thinks sustainable crude pricing in the $60 range is needed for operators to increase pumping activities in North America. When speaking about near-term opportunity, BHI is looking to take advantage of the 5,000 uncompleted wells nationwide. Even with the negative outlook in 2016, CEO Martin Craighead said “We are well positioned for opportunities today and when (the) market begins to recover.

Their CEO isn’t being passive either as they plan to release a host of new products focused on technology and uplift to bolser their bottom line in the second half of 2016.

It will be really interesting to follow their next few quarters as they streamline and try to re-grab the market share they lost.

sources

Amrutha Gayathri of ReutersBaker Hughes says North America recovery unlikely this year
Tess Stynes of The Wall Street Journal via Market WatchBaker Hughes Loss Widens on pricing pressure
Claire Pool of The StreetBaker Hughes Reports Loss, Paints Rosier Picture for Second Half of 2016

Disclaimer
The data presented above has a margin of error of 5-8% as a result of E&P and/or service company errors or incorrect data filings. Neither the information, nor any opinion contained in this site constitutes a solicitation or offer by Primary Vision or its affiliates to buy or sell any securities, futures, options or other financial instruments or provide any investment advice or service.

Big Blue: Schlumberger 2016 Q2 Comments and more

Big-Blue-Schlumberger-Q2-2016-Comments-And-More

by Matt Johnson

Last week we covered Halliburton’s (HAL: $43.21) Q2 results and we’ll follow up this week with a similar look into Schlumberger’s (SLB: $81.16) second quarter.

Primary visions database is hyper-focused on frac data, so its important to note that while our comments are about their entire Q2 results our data features SLB’s U.S. pressure pumping activities.

The Good – SLB approved dividends of .50c per share and maintains a positive outlook that we’re at the bottom of a downward cycle.  SLB is the worlds largest oilfield service provider, however they are the second most prolific pressure pumper in the U.S. when analyzing active spreads and total frac jobs. CapEx is expected to stay unchanged at $2.2b. SLB has been aggressive in keeping its margins stable vs. the competition and continues to renegotiate long-term contracts that aren’t financially viable.  Asking never hurts.

WATER VOLUME – SLB was #3 in water usage in 2013, #2 in 2014 and 2015, and so far remains in the #2 spot in 2016.

PROPPANT MASS – SLB was #4 in proppant mass in 2013, #3 in 2014 and #4 in 2015. 2016 is a bit muddy right now, no pun intended, as HAL maintains the #1 spot, yet 2nd through 5th place are tight. We’re paying close attention to this as our clients are hungry for proppant data.

TOTAL NUMBER OF FRAC JOBS – In 2015, SLB firmly held 3rd position with over 1,300 frac jobs. So far in 2016 they have moved up a spot to #2.  See this chart below that highlights SLBs total frac jobs in the last five quarters.

FSC comparision Chart for SLB

The Bad – SLB suffered Year over Year declines in revenue and net income as the demand for pressure pumping activities contracted.  They suffered impairments of almost $2b and restructuring charges totaling $646mm.

The Ugly – SLB continued to reduce their workforce by 16,000 people through the first half of 2016 which is a total reduction of 40% since 2014. SLB is on pace to have its lowest year of revenues in the last six years.

The two charts below highlight SLB’s frac jobs and spreads, which are great activity metrics.

FSC month by month Chart for SLB

Note: The Q2 2016 data is incomplete as there is a lag in the data of ~100 days

SLB Forecasting Chart

Note: There is a lag in the data of about ~100 days. We continue to capture new data every single day (Running Frac Spreads = blue) and compliment the data lag with our custom forecasting algorithm (Forecast = orange). If you click on the chart you will better be able to see the chart labels.

Interested in learning more about the Primary Vision Frac Spread Count or what a frac spread is? More information here.

Completing the merger with strategic partner Cameron

SLB merged with a powerful ally in oil and gas equipment manufacturing last year in Cameron.  The realization of this sale was completed in the second quarter of 2016.  Cameron “is a leading provider of flow equipment products, systems and services” to oil and gas and will help move SLB into the next generation of completion and production services.  Cameron already had a strategic alliance with SLB and looks to strengthen that bond to SLBs core business as the companies integrate with one another through the rest of 2016.

Baker Hughes (BHI: $44.07) results are expected this Thursday and will be featured in our next blog.

sources
ReutersSchlumberger posts unadjusted Q2 loss, cut another 8K jobs
Carl Surran of Seeking AlphaSchlumberger posts unadjusted Q2 loss, cut another 8K jobs
Zacks.com from NasdaqSchlumberger (SLB) Q2 Earnings Fall Y/Y on Weak Activity
Liam Denning of BloombergFor Oil’s Future, See Schlumberger

Disclaimer
The data presented above has a margin of error of 5-8% as a result of E&P and/or service company errors or incorrect data filings. Neither the information, nor any opinion contained in this site constitutes a solicitation or offer by Primary Vision or its affiliates to buy or sell any securities, futures, options or other financial instruments or provide any investment advice or service.

Frac Spread Count 2.0 – June 2016

PVFSC-6-6-2016

click on the image above to see it in full size

by Jake Stevens

Have you prepared for the inevitable?

While a lot of focus is on permits and even the rig count over the last 30 or 40 years, we’ve been distributing a new metric that propelled Primary Vision into the mainstream in the summer of 2015, one we believe is the most important metric of frac activity.  We call it the Primary Vision Frac Spread Count (I might refer to it as the PVFSC or the FSC for the rest of this blog).

A quick summary of what the PVFSC is.  Simply put its a metric for the highest daily value of active frac spreads for a given week.

Ok great, but what exactly is a frac spread.  Well, lets start telling you what it isn’t.  It has nothing directly to do with natural gas prices (the crack spread), natural gas refiners (the fractionation spread) or the value gained from the sale of any natural gas liquid.

Primary Vision knows the who (pressure pumper), where, when, how many, and in most cases what the service providers are pumping, but it doesn’t stop there. We also know for what operators they are pumping for.

To summarize for every frac spread we know the following:

1) Days Active
2) Location
3) Pressure Pumper
4) Operator
5) Volumes of water, proppant, chemicals pumped

This allows us to know the number of active fleets on a given day and allows for the creation of the Primary Vision Frac Spread Count.

We give away for free, updated every week ,the Primary Vision Frac Spread Count National number.  This you can find here. Its updated by 10am every Friday.  Sign up for the free national report and you’ll get an email sent out weekly that includes the historical frac spread data plus the frac spread data for the previous week.  Use the chart and the data as you wish, all we’re asking is that you source us when using the data/image in a commercial capacity.

Its free, and yes you can get started today.

In a few days we’ll highlight what you get with the paid subscription for the Primary Vision Granular Frac Spread Count or you can reach out to us at info@pvmic.com to learn more.

 

The Primary Vision US Proppant Mass Index

Back in February we launched our US Proppant Mass Index, if you didn’t see it you should check it out here. In brief, the index measures the average proppant mass used in a frac treatment across all US wells. When we published this last, we gave you information up to and including Quarter Four / 2014.

2011 – Q1 100
2011 – Q2 99
2011 – Q3 100
2011 – Q4 98
2012 – Q1 91
2012 – Q2 89
2012 – Q3 93
2012 – Q4 102
2013 – Q1 103
2013 – Q2 106
2013 – Q3 108
2013 – Q4 117
2014 – Q1 131
2014 – Q2 145
2014 – Q3 158
2014 – Q4 172
2015 – Q1 194
2015 – Q2 209
2015 – Q3 219

As we pointed out back in February, we were seeing an increase and its continued to increased quarter over quarter since.

image001

 

We can provide a similar index based on our user’s requirements. Example Analysis: horizontal wells only, vertical wells only, directional wells only, by operator, by service company, by region or a combination of them all.

Please contact us for more information about these indexes, or if you have any questions about our capabilities, services, or products.

July ReFrac Report – Permian Basin Style

July Update

Primary Vision has been working hard to improve our ReFrac report offering.  We’ve added some additional charts for you focused on the Permian Basin, changed some charts that were hard to read, added a printable version, upgraded our delivery method from an attachment to a link, etc. etc.  A lot of changes that required a lot of testing and we’re not gonna stop there.  Look for us to add in additional analytics, chemicals and production before the end of the year.

Screen Shot 2015-07-27 at 6.32.07 PM

Refrac’ed Wells from 2011-2015 Year To Date

side note: We’re also looking to add an account based system as well as additional reports (hint: Frac Fleet report)

In addition to our reports, we’re going to soon be adding production data, additional completions data and making our trek to the great white north (yes, Canada)!  All a part of the continued evolution of our comprehensive U.S. frac data products.

Survey Forthcoming

Some time this week we’re going to release a survey on our refrac report and a bit about what’s important to you frac data-wise.  Should be super easy, ten questions or less.  Thanks in advance!

Shameless Plugging

Still thinking about ordering our Granular ReFrac Report?  Get July’s instantly and be setup for August where we’ll focus on the Barnett and maybe one additional surprise. You’ll have to subscribe to find out!

How to Subscribe:

You can order here for just $99 (or jump on our soon to change yearly pricing of $899) that is packed with 30+ pages of information including…
Number of ReFrac’ed Wells by Quarter, Region, Orientation and Trajectory
– 
Updated from June!
ReFrac’ed Wells by Year by Top 10 Operator (ALL and HZ wells separately)
– Updated from June!

ReFrac’ed Wells by Year by Service Company (ALL and HZ wells separately)
– Updated from June!

Average Proppant Mass by Proppant Type (ALL and HZ wells separately)
– Updated from June!

ReFrac’ed Wells by Year by Proppant Type (ALL and HZ wells separately)
– Updated from June!

Proppant Mass Comparison Between Original and Second Frac (ALL and HZ wells separately)
- Updated from June!
Heat maps for Re’Frac wells for each year
- Updated from June!
Additionally we drilled down into the Permian Basin in July, so additional slides focused on that region are included.

Screen Shot 2015-07-27 at 6.28.58 PM

2011-2015 Permian Basin Heat Map of refracs

Summer is half way over, get outside!

Primary Vision Team

ReFrac Report Redux & Eagle Ford Drill Down

Updates, Refracs and Future

The rig count has gone up for the first time in 2015 and more permits were issued last week than in any week since February. Good news?  Kinda!

The grass is fairly green here as we move past the half way point of 2015 and boy is the refrac market heating up!

According to Forbes “1 in 2″ frac’ed wells in the United States are candidates to be refrac’ed.

According to our frac records that is almost 50,000 candidate wells!

Halliburton and Schlumberger seem to be gearing up technically and financially to make a big splash into refracs in the second half of 2015.

Let that sink in a second…

Where are the candidate wells?  
What operators are testing and what operators are ready to turn the refrac machine on?  
How much proppant is being used in those refracs?
What is the chemical system that is being used?  
What is the secondary frac chemistry?

All of these questions have been asked to Primary Vision in the last month! We can help you and your team learn more about the buzzy topic, so lets get started with our June report right now.

You can order here for just $99 (or jump on our soon to change yearly pricing of $899) that is packed with 30+ pages of information including…

Number of ReFrac’ed Wells by Quarter, Region, Orientation and Trajectory – Updated from May!
ReFrac’ed Wells by Year by Top 10 Operator (ALL and HZ wells separately) – Updated from May!
ReFrac’ed Wells by Year by Service Company (ALL and HZ wells separately) – Updated from May!
Average Proppant Mass by Proppant Type (ALL and HZ wells separately) – Updated from May!
ReFrac’ed Wells by Year by Proppant Type (ALL and HZ wells separately) – Updated from May!
Proppant Mass Comparison Between Original and Second Frac (ALL and HZ wells separately) – Updated from May!
Heat maps for Re’Frac wells for each year – Updated from May!
and we drilled down (all puns intended) into The Eagle Ford as well as made our prediction on total refracs for 2015.

Next month we’ll cover the Permian Basin and soon be releasing our second report based around pressure pumpers. Things are getting exciting!

Want to get on the early bird list for that? Email me at mjohnson@pvmic.com

2014 – Q4 Shows 6% Increase In Frac Water Volume Over Previous Quarter. Feb 2015 Primary Vision US Frac Water Index Update

We saw a 6% increase in 2014 – Q4 over 2014 – Q3 in average frac water volumes. It will be interesting to see if this trend continues with recent oil price declines.

Here is the latest update to the Primary Vision US Frac Water Index. You will notice some slight differences from last time we published. We have updated our methodology to give a more accurate representation of average frac water volumes in the region.

Quarter    Index
2011-Q1    100.0
2011-Q2    97.3
2011-Q3    98.4
2011-Q4    93.1
2012-Q1    89.4
2012-Q2    89.5
2012-Q3    87.6
2012-Q4    96.2
2013-Q1    101.5
2013-Q2    103.4
2013-Q3    108.7
2013-Q4    117.1
2014-Q1    129.6
2014-Q2    140.1
2014-Q3    147.9
2014-Q4    156.4

Frac Water Trends in the United States

Frac Water Trends in the United States

Have questions about our methodology or about Primary Vision’s products and services? Reach out to us here: info@pvmic.com and one of our advisors will reach back to you.

Marcellus Shale Market Trends Part 2: Is Average Proppant Mass Still on the Rise?

In our last post, we discussed a variety of factors that have influenced frac activity levels in the Marcellus shale, including continually rising natural gas production levels, basis differentials at regional market hubs relative to Henry Hub natural gas spot prices, and pipeline takeaway constraints. Reduced drilling and completion (D&C) activity by certain operators has been offset by increased activity by others. That said, there is little doubt that D&C activity would be more robust were it not for these factors. We also took a look at some notable acquisitions and divestments in the Appalachian Basin, the most notable of which was Southwestern Energy’s acquisition from Chesapeake Energy of 413,000 net acres and 435 wells with net production in September 2014 of 336 MMcfe.

Today, we delve into well completion designs that have been used in efforts to optimize well performance and what implications it has had for proppant use. In particular, we focus on 16 leading E&Ps active in the Marcellus.

With E&Ps in full-scale well manufacturing mode in the Marcellus, emphasis has shifted to increased operational efficiency to bring down or, at the very least, contain well construction costs. But just as we see across several oily basins, operators targeting both liquids-rich and dry-gas zones of the Marcellus (and Utica) shale have continued to fine-tune well and frac designs to optimize well performance.

In an effort to increase EURs and produce wells to their maximum potential, E&Ps in the Marcellus have been: 1) drilling increasingly longer laterals; 2) improving lateral placement in the reservoir; 3) increasing frac stage counts per well; 4) using shorter stage lengths (SSL) and reduced cluster spacing (RCS) completions (tighter spacing between stages and more perforations or “perfs” per lateral). RCS completions were first adopted in the Marcellus, and operators have been using the technique since early-2012. As Credit Suisse has suggested, RCS completions have become “almost universally adopted in the Marcellus.” Operators are more commonly evaluating well costs and economics based on per-lateral-foot basis.

In April 2012, Range Resources announced that 2 wells using RCS completions produced at twice the initial production rate (IP-rate) as compared to non-RCS wells on the same well pad. In September 2013, Antero Resources commented that using RCS frac designs in 17 liquids-rich Marcellus wells resulted in incremental frac costs that averaged 20% higher than previous designs ($2 million vs. $1.5 million per well). But the operator saw IP-rates increase by 25-35% compared to similar wells in the area. CONSOL Energy commented that when it first used RCS on two wells in early-2012, IP-rate improvements over non-RCS wells were not meaningful. However, the operator observed that after 15 months of production history, these two wells were 20% and 40% above the type curve, respectively.

What is the implication of all of this for proppant? Longer laterals, SSL/RCS completions, and increased stage counts per well all in isolation lead to increased proppant. But the contemporaneous adoption of all of these practices has led to significant increases in average proppant mass pumper per well.

We categorized 16 publicly-traded operators into peer groups as outlined in the table below. The E&Ps have collectively accounted for approximately 75% of frac activity in the Marcellus since 2012.

Marcellus Top-16 Operators

Notes: XTO Energy operates autonomously as a subsidiary of ExxonMobil and manages US Land upstream operations on behalf of its parent company; E&P categorization reflects that of Raymond James

The proppant mass index presented below uses weighted averages based on the number of wells frac’ed by operators within each peer group. The chart reflects growth of average proppant mass per well using 2011 Q4 as a base of comparison.

Marcellus-Average-Proppant-Mass-Index-12Q1-14Q3

Marcellus Average Proppant Mass Index (12Q1-14Q3)

Sources: Primary Vision

The findings are rather staggering. As a collective, average total proppant mass per well is up 2.3x between 2011 Q4 and 2014 Q3. Our analytics reveal that as a collective group, average proppant mass per well has increased at a 32% CAGR between 2012 and 2014.

As this trend has played out, it has had cascading impacts across the upstream supply chain. After a surge of manufacturing capacity expansion during 2012 and 2013 led to an oversupply and falling pricing, frac sand suppliers have seen significant demand growth bring the market back closer to balance over the past ~12 months and have realized . Proppant logistics have been challenging due to chronic shortages of rail cars and truck-trailers as well as intermittently by weather. During 2014, operators have reported delays scheduling frac due to temporary sand shortages. Certain frac services providers have commented that proppant hauling costs essentially doubled overnight during spring 2014 – sand haulers appeared to be colluding by simultaneously charging a per-truck day rate rather than on a per-load basis. Some frac services providers have rushed to lock in long-term supply agreements with sand suppliers.

Primary Vision’s customers leverage our Big Data solutions to gain meaningful insights on the latest market dynamics and act accordingly. By staying ahead of the curve, they can make data-driven tactical and strategic decisions that help increase their bottom line.