Energy stocks were mostly lower this afternoon, with the NYSE Energy Sector Index falling nearly 0.4% while shares of energy companies in the S&P 500 were down just over 0.5% as a group. West Texas Intermediate crude oil for August delivery was rising 11 cents to $58.02 per barrel at the New York Mercantile Exchange while the global benchmark Brent crude September contract was advancing 22 cents to $64.41 per barrel. August natural gas futures were 1 cent lower at $2.27 per 1 million BTU. Among energy-related ETFs, the United States Oil fund was climbing nearly 0.3% while the United States Natural Gas fund was rising 0.6%. The Philadelphia Oil Service Sector index was up almost 0.6%.
Among energy stocks moving on news:
(+) Recon Technology Ltd (RCON) climbed 6.6% after the oilfield-services company Tuesday announced a two-year sales agreement with Valvitalia SpA, gaining exclusive rights to market the Italian company’s fluid measurement and filtering products to China Petroleum Engineering & Construction Corp, a subsidiary of China National Petroleum Corp.
In other sector news:
(+) Quintana Energy Services (QES) was surging almost 6% higher on Tuesday. BofA-Merrill Lynch halved its price target for the company’s stock to $3 a share as part of a broader move at the brokerage trimming the price targets for multiple companies in the oilfield-services industry.
(-) Occidental Petroleum (OXY) was fractionally lower after Bloomberg News reported, citing unnamed sources, that the energy major is looking to sell a majority stake in pipeline operator Western Midstream Partners (WES), which it will acquire as part of its upcoming purchase of of Anadarko Petroleum (APC). Potential buyers include Oneok (OKE), Enterprise Products Partners (EPD) and Energy Transfer (ET), according to the report.