Barron’s Spots a Gusher in Noble Corporation

Barron’s has published a brief article making a bullish case for Noble Corporation. Jay Palmer, writing for Barron’s, believes that Noble is well positioned for a world in which deepwater drilling will account for a growing share of production as China and other emerging countries continue to demand more oil. The article points out that Noble has a solid balance sheet and significant international operations that should mitigate the risk of further disruption in the Gulf of Mexico due to the federal moratorium put in place in response to the Deepwater Horizon disaster. Read this article for more details and links to related article.

Noble Corporation Forecasts Manageable Cost for Retrofitting Gulf Rigs

Noble Corporation predicts that additional capital expenditures necessary to comply with new regulations for drilling in the Gulf of Mexico should not exceed $10 million per rig. In the company’s second quarter 10-Q report filed with the SEC yesterday, management indicates that the exact amount required for rig retrofits cannot be precisely determined pending the release of final regulations. The amount required for each rig is expected to vary based on its age. It is also possible that Noble may incur similar costs for certain rigs that are presently located outside the Gulf of Mexico. Read this article for more details.

Modern Drilling Rigs Have Advantage Under Proposed Regulations

New rules for offshore drilling under consideration in Congress could create major competitive advantages for offshore contract drillers that have heavily invested in modern drilling fleets in recent years. According to The Wall Street Journal, legislation designed to prevent future oil spills set minimum standards for blowout preventers (BOP) that could render older drilling rigs obsolete or, at a minimum, require expensive retrofitting. Read this article for more information.

A Closer Look at Noble Corporation’s Q2 Results

Noble Corporation recently announced second quarter 2010 earnings of $218 million, or $0.85 per share. The results were negatively impacted by a combination of lower utilization for the overall fleet and sharply lower average dayrates. As a result, contract drilling revenues dropped to $687.5 million for the second quarter compared to $808.6 million for the first quarter. Second quarter 2009 contract drilling revenues were $868.2 million. In this article, we take a closer look at Noble’s results.

Diamond Offshore Represents Interesting Play on Deepwater Revival

In this article, we profile Diamond Offshore, one of the leading companies in the deepwater drilling industry. In previous articles, we focused on two companies in the offshore drilling industry with lower risk profiles. Both Noble Corporation and Ensco plc have exposure to deepwater drilling in the Gulf of Mexico but also have significant international operations along with large fleets of jackup rigs that are designed for less controversial shallow water drilling. Read this article for more information.

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