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Author Archives: Ross Torgerson

Bankers feel oil price squeeze

Odessa banker Luis Gomez said the signs of the oil and gas slowdown already show up at his Commercial State Bank in the form of lower demand for loans and less cash-flush borrowers. The roughly $560 million bank, with a 67 percent loans-to-deposits ratio, expects a pinch if the downturn proves long-lasting, as do many fellow bankers in the region. ...

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U.S. refinery strike affects one-fifth of national capacity

HOUSTON, Feb 22 – The largest U.S. refinery strike in 35 years entered its fourth week on Sunday as workers at 12 refineries accounting for one-fifth of national production capacity were walking picket lines. Sources familiar with the negotiations said talks may resume by mid-week to end the walkout by 6,550 members of the United Steelworkers union (USW) at 15 ...

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WPX Energy asks its vendors for 20 percent cut

FARMINGTON – Local contractors in the oil and gas industry are facing severe cuts in the wake of fallen oil prices. One industry leader in the San Juan Basin, WPX Energy, has asked its contractors for a 20 percent price cut on goods and services. “I am writing to request a 20 percent cost reduction in the goods and services ...

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Pair of Houston-based companies among latest to announce cuts

A pair of Houston-based oil and gas companies have announced they will be making cutbacks in 2015 as a result of slumping oil prices. Noble Energy Inc. and Marathon Oil join a growing laundry list of O&G companies nationwide making similar announcements. Noble Energy Noble Energy, one of the largest companies in the Houston area, announced that it expects to ...

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Chevron to move 100 jobs from its San Ramon headquarters to Houston

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SAN RAMON – Chevron has announced it will move 100 jobs from its San Ramon corporate headquarters to Houston this year. The jobs, in the oil giant’s human resources department, are non-union and currently are based at the Chevron Park campus, at 6001 Bollinger Canyon Road, the company said. Chevron also owns and operates a petroleum refinery in Richmond. “Please ...

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As pink slips mount, roughnecks cry foul

A roughneck from Abilene claims in a federal lawsuit that Patterson-UTI in Midland laid off him and 200 other rig hands earlier this month without the 60 days notice required by federal employment law. The suit states James Hanks found work as a roughneck in 2013 with Patterson-UTI in Midland, working on a rig for two weeks at a time, ...

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Derailment involving North Dakota crude sparks complaints

BISMARCK, N.D. — The derailment in West Virginia of a train carrying oil from North Dakota is prompting complaints that state and federal governments aren’t doing enough to ensure the safe transport of crude by rail. A train carrying 3 million gallons of crude from North Dakota’s Bakken oil fields derailed Monday in the unincorporated town of Mount Carbon, West ...

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Guar: Cheap oil gives new company new problem

BROWNFIELD – A tiny bean that saw some big trouble last year is back in business. But while Brownfield’s guar-splitting operation is under new ownership and growers’ claims are settled, low oil prices mean the legume’s future is not exactly worry-free. Guar’s main use is in hydraulic fracturing, or fracking. And like everything else tied to the oil industry, guar ...

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Retail gasoline prices up 4 cents across Texas, nationwide

LONGVIEW, Texas — Retail gasoline prices across Texas and nationwide have increased an average 4 cents per gallon this week. AAA Texas on Thursday reported the typical price at the pump statewide was $2.11 per gallon. Gasoline prices across the U.S. have reached $2.27 per gallon. The association survey found Dallas with the most expensive gasoline in Texas at $2.15 ...

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Devon Energy to cut back rigs

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CARLSBAD – Despite showing increasing production, Devon Energy plans to operate on 13 rigs for 2015, as compared with more than 20 rigs last year. Devon Energy announced it’s earnings for 2014 on Tuesday, along with a brief summary of what the company is planning for 2015. “Drilling activity will be centered in the Delaware Basin where Devon expects to ...

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