Robert Zimmerman

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  • 3 LNG Shipping Companies to Look At, Carefully

    By Robert Zimmerman - August 14, 2013 | Tickers: GLOG, GLNG, TGP

    Search the phrase “LNG imports” for news and you’ll discover evidence of increasing demand for liquefied natural gas, or LNG, across the globe. A major German utility signs a deal to import natural gas from an East Coast Canadian company. India ends LNG import duties. The Japanese trade minister pushes for U.S. LNG exports to help his country’s balance of trade. For investors, one way to capitalize more »

  • One Small Pipeline Company Beating Larger Rivals

    By Robert Zimmerman - August 2, 2013 | Tickers: EPD, GEL, PAA

    They say good things come in small packages. Regarding US oil pipeline companies, this could very well be true. While large midstream companies like Enterprise Products Partners (NYSE: EPD) and Plains All American Pipeline (NYSE: PAA) returned great results to their investors, a relatively small company has beaten both in terms of capital gains and distribution growth.

    To be sure, Enterprise and Plains boast attractive returns. According to the chart more »

  • 3 Ways to Profit From Offshore Drilling

    By Robert Zimmerman - July 31, 2013 | Tickers: BRS, GLF, SDRL

    The Macondo oil rig disaster caused a temporary cessation of new oil exploration in the Gulf of Mexico. Since the moratorium was lifted, the Gulf has become a hotbed of exploration activities. With this new activity, there’s money to be made and here are three companies to consider.

    Young fleet, big orders

    Seadrill (NYSE: SDRL) owns and leases drilling ships (or units) used to tap into offshore oil and more »

  • Three Ways to Profit From Colorado Oil

    By Robert Zimmerman - July 29, 2013 | Tickers: APC, EPD, NBL

    While the Bakken and Eagle Ford shale oil plays understandably attract the spotlight in the world of new oil production, a lesser known play in Colorado may soon make its presence felt. The Niobrara in northeastern Colorado (see map below) may contain more than 7 billion barrels of recoverable oil. Let’s look at three companies investing in this play.

    <img alt="" height="277" src="" width="416" />

    Map courtesy of

    Classic exploration and development

    Two more »

  • Is it Too Late for US LNG Exports?

    By Robert Zimmerman - July 23, 2013 | Tickers: APC, CQP, LNG, DGRLY, NBL

    This past May, the Department of Energy granted Freeport LNG (a private company) license to export liquefied natural gas, or LNG, to foreign countries--foreign countries that do not have a free trade agreement with the United States that is. Thus, Freeport joins Cheniere Energy (NYSEMKT: LNG) as a LNG exporter. This decision presages more export licenses to be issued to US companies. Given the foreign competition already in place, will more »

  • Two Energy Companies to Consider and One to Avoid

    By Robert Zimmerman - July 22, 2013 | Tickers: EROC, EPD, PWE

    For years now, US and Canadian oil and natural gas production not only helped reduce oil imports to the US, but also rewarded their investors. For all the headlines trumpeting increased production, not all energy companies benefit shareholders. Let’s look at three energy companies with different risk and reward profiles.

    The good

    Without a doubt and by any metric, Enterprise Products Partners (NYSE: EPD) delivers capital gains and income more »

  • Another Big Texas Oil Play?

    By Robert Zimmerman - July 19, 2013 | Tickers: APA, DVN, RRC

    The great state of Texas already produces approximately 30% of all oil in the United States. Over the past two years there’s been growing buzz about the Cline shale play in the Texas Permian Basin. Specifically, the Cline may hold 30 billion barrels of recoverable oil. In contrast, the Bakken in the Dakotas holds roughly 7.4 billion (at last check) and the Eagle Ford in Texas holds 853 more »

  • 3 Ways to Profit From Asian Natural Gas Imports

    By Robert Zimmerman - July 8, 2013 | Tickers: XOM, GLNG, GMLP, IOC

    The growing production of natural gas in the United States caused prices to drop to less than $4/million Btu. In other parts of the world, prices remain high. In Japan, for example, natural gas sells for roughly $14/million Btu. In the wake of its earthquake/tsunami/Fukushima nuclear disaster, Japan has understandably moved towards natural gas as a utility fuel despite the high cost. In fact, Japan is more »

  • Sand and Water, the “Picks and Shovels” of Hydraulic Fracturing

    By Robert Zimmerman - June 17, 2013 | Tickers: HCLP, NES, SLCA

    All companies engaged in hydraulic fracturing need two basic things: water to fracture rock so as to release oil and gas, and proppants, particulates mixed in the water to keep the fractures open. The future looks bright for hydraulic fracturing as America’s demand for oil and gas relentlessly grows. Let’s see how investors can profit from water and proppants in the hydraulic fracturing world.

    Total solutions for all more »

  • 3 Latin American Companies Worth a Look

    By Robert Zimmerman - June 6, 2013 | Tickers: EC, ASR, LFL, PBR

    When thinking of emerging market investments, Brazilian oil giant Petrobras (NYSE: PBR) frequently comes to mind. With a $67 billion market cap, exciting deepwater prospects off the Brazilian coast, a PE of around 12 and a 6.6% dividend, Petrobras at first blush seems like an ideal investment.

    Unfortunately, the Brazilian government owns a controlling stake and government interests don’t always align with those of foreign investors. Production is more »

  • Where Are the 3 Stooges Now?

    By Robert Zimmerman - May 31, 2013 | Tickers: CHK, KOG, SD

    A few months ago, I criticized three oil and gas companies that should have rewarded their investors, but didn’t. Their first quarter earnings reports have since come and gone, the market has hit new highs, and solar flares have increased. Have any of these impacted the sorry trio of Chesapeake Energy (NYSE: CHK), SandRidge Energy (NYSE: SD), or Kodiak Oil and Gas (NYSE: KOG)?

    A new era for Chesapeake more »

  • 3 Companies Driving Over OPEC's Wallet

    By Robert Zimmerman - May 21, 2013 | Tickers: CLNE, F, WPRT

    Fellow Fool Matt DiLallo recently pointed out that in order for the US to be independent of OPEC oil, our domestic demand for oil needs to decline. Increased domestic oil production obviously helps, but the numbers bear out that we need to do more with less oil to achieve energy independence. Higher mileage cars and natural gas burning vehicles could do wonders for US energy self-sufficiency. Fortunately, there are three more »

  • US Natural Gas Exports Won't Save Europe

    By Robert Zimmerman - May 12, 2013 | Tickers: APC, CQP, LNG, HAL, WGP, WES

    Kirk Spano, columnist and founder of Bluemound Asset Management, LLC, recently opined that US natural gas exports were critical for the long-term stability of Europe. Specifically, he declared, “Without more self sufficiency long term and stable energy supplies intermediate term, Europe could be doomed to decades of instability. Which is where the U.S. comes in.“

    “Doomed to decades of instability?” Oh please. As Michael Greenstone, professor of environmental economics more »

  • 3 Companies Drilling OPEC's Coffin

    By Robert Zimmerman - May 9, 2013 | Tickers: NE, SDRL, RIG

    Note: A previous version of this article incorrectly referred to Noble Corp as Noble Energy. The error has been corrected below.

    Oil exploration and production in the Gulf of Mexico continues its upward momentum in all aspects. By some estimates, the Gulf could yield 2.5 BOE/day. Given that the US imports about 4 million BOE/day from OPEC countries, Gulf of Mexico oil could seriously hurt OPEC imports more »

  • 3 Companies Making Putin Pout

    By Robert Zimmerman - May 7, 2013 | Tickers: APC, GLOG, NBL

    The Russian economy depends on its energy exports. While President Vladimir Putin publicly claims his country “only” derives 50% of its revenues from oil and natural gas exports, others put that number as high as 80%. Additionally, by some estimates, Russia needs its Ural oil to sell at $150/bbl to finance an ambitious plan of domestic spending. Right now, Ural oil sells for around $112/bbl.

    Beyond the money more »

  • Will Natural Gas Blow Up the Middle East?

    By Robert Zimmerman - May 3, 2013 | Tickers: DGRLY, DKL, DK, NBL, WOPEY

    As if the Middle East doesn't already have enough friction, another hissyfit seems to be evolving there. Off the coast of Israel, several natural gas fields have been discovered with enough gas to make Israel an energy exporter. Instead of relying on Egypt for a significant portion of its gas needs, Israel could tell the Muslim Brotherhood what to do with their gas and go it alone.

    What’s more »

  • Natural Gas as a Vehicle Fuel -- Is a New Day Finally Dawning?

    By Robert Zimmerman - May 1, 2013 | Tickers: CLNE, TA, TANN

    It’s cheap, clean and American. No worries about politically unstable or unfriendly countries. There’s enough to last for decades. Natural gas offers the US a terrific fuel for uses beyond heating and power generation.

    In particular, the holy grail for the natural gas industry has been transportation. According to the US Energy Information Authority, natural gas use as a vehicle fuel increased over the past five years, yet more »

  • Is Now the Time for Westport Innovations?

    By Robert Zimmerman - April 29, 2013 | Tickers: CMI, WPRT

    TravelCenters of America recently made a potentially game-changing announcement: it teamed up with Royal Dutch Shell to construct a nationwide network of natural gas refueling stations for road trucks. For Westport Innovations (NASDAQ: WPRT), this announcement is welcome news.

    The not so little engine that can
    Westport designs natural gas burning engines for a variety of vehicles. The actual large-scale production is done by the likes of Cummins (NYSE: CMImore »)

  • Natural Gas Exports: Who Might Win?

    By Robert Zimmerman - April 28, 2013 | Tickers: CQP, LNG, GLOG, LNCO, LINE

    The Deloitte Center for Energy Solutions analyzed the impact of American natural gas exports. According to its report, Deloitte believes exporting 6 billion cubic feet a day will cause natural gas prices to increase 15 cents per million BTUs, or 3.75%. For exporters, this spells opportunity. By the time gas is liquefied, exported, and then regassified, it costs about $9/mmBTU. Despite these costs, exporting gas could produce more »

  • 2 Refiners Not Bothered by the EPA and 1 That Is

    By Robert Zimmerman - April 22, 2013 | Tickers: CLMT, DKL, DK, VLO

    Last month, the EPA released new requirements regarding the sulfur content of gasoline. Predictable peals of protest followed with claims that the new regulations would cost the refinery business upwards of $10 billion. Valero Energy (NYSE: VLO) immediately criticized the move, claiming it would have to spend $300 to $400 million to comply. Maybe that’s why Valero CEO William Klesse sold 50,000 shares in late March.

    Two other more »

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