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WILLISTON, N.D. | BY ERNEST SCHEYDER
U.S. oil companies, under renewed pressure from falling crude prices, are increasingly tweaking and mixing fracking technologies as they scramble to squeeze more out of wells and eke out profits after rounds of cost-cutting.
Shale oil firms need the experiments to payoff now more so than before given that oil prices have resumed their slide to trade around $49 per barrel this week from $60 a few months ago.
Quarterly earnings – and the reams of data that accompany them – throughout the next few weeks will offer Wall Street the first opportunity to assess those efforts and pick potential winners and losers.
When oil fetched $100 a barrel and profits were fatter, most companies followed a similar script. Now, many try to go their own way in a race to bring down the price level at which production remains profitable.
Noting the new trend, CapitalOne Securities said in a recent note to clients that mixing up well completion techniques could result in “a step-change in well performance.” Continue reading…