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Weekly Newsletter, Saturday, 09/16/2006

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Table of Contents

  1. Commentary
  2. Changes in Portfolio
  3. New Plays
  4. Existing Plays
  5. Watch List

Leaps Trader Commentary

$62, Do I Hear $60?

Oil fell to $62 on Friday before rebounding to close at $63.25. I believe the drop was caused by expiring options on the October contract and the pending expiration of that contract for trading. We see it every month with sharp moves in whichever direction traders were caught with an imbalance. This month they were predominately long in anticipation of hurricanes and conflict with Iran. Neither appeared and traders took large losses.

I believe we will test $60 before seeing any material rebound. At this point it may be a self fulfilling event just to see what OPEC does to support the price. They have made it perfectly clear they will not wait for the next meeting to take action if it is deemed necessary. Several analysts familiar with the people behind the scenes claim Saudi will quietly cut production if we hit $60. That would take several weeks to be felt but once traders feel price supports are being applied that should give us our bottom. Most energy analysts are now quoting $58 as a target low and a buy signal.

The price of natural gas is still in free fall after a monster +108 bcf injection into storage last week. With warm weather fading and cool weather still weeks away this is prime injection season as you can tell by that +108 number. This put gas in storage at nearly 3.1 tcf and very close to the maximum storage levels between 3.2-3.5 tcf. With many weeks to go before any serious draws for heating it is almost a sure bet we will hit that max storage level and gas will backup in the pipeline. This will cause gas prices to plunge as suppliers compete to have their gas taken over someone else. This suggests current contracts for gas could see prices under $4. This has put strain on the December contract, which finally crumbled last week from support at $10. It closed on Friday at $7.75.

The falling gas prices are only temporary and it will eventually work to our benefit. This should push gas producers like CHK and ECA to new lows where we will be waiting to pick them up cheap.

I sent out two updates during the week, which covered some entry points triggered on the watch list and a reader question about the crumbling energy sector. Check your email if you did not receive them. You can always email me your questions at Jim at OptionInvestor.com. I will answer you directly and may answer your questions in the newsletter so everyone can benefit.

I have a question for you today. Do you want me to cover stocks outside the energy sector? I had several emails this week both pro and con as a result of the Thursday night update. For instance I believe the homebuilders have found a bottom and we could add a couple for diversification without much risk. Sometimes no brainer situations appear and there is no reason not to take advantage of it other than clouding our main focus of energy related positions.

I am going to keep this short today since I have a lot of additions to enter this weekend. I am targeting $60 for a couple more entries while we wait for $4 gas to buy gas producers.

Have a great week!


October Crude Oil Futures Chart - Daily

December Crude Oil Futures Chart - Daily

December Natural Gas Futures Chart - Daily

 


Changes in Portfolio

New Plays

None


Dropped Plays

None


New Watch List Plays Triggered

Portfolio Listing & Top Picks


New Plays

Most Recent Plays

CEO $81.75 Cnooc Ltd

CNOOC is rapidly acquiring new reserves and moving to develop them quickly. Interim results for 2006 showed a +47% jump in revenues with oil production rising +7.4% to 81.7 BOE. As a subsidiary of a national oil company they have the right to acquire a 51% interest in any discovery in China's offshore waters. Essentially if Jim Brown Oil Company acquired a lease from China to drill offshore and I found oil, Cnooc Ltd has the right to acquire 51% of my discovery. As investors in Cnooc I feel like we are betting with the house. Any discovery by anybody in the area becomes our discovery as well.

I am not adding an insurance put due to the cheap option price of our call. If you want to add one personally the Dec $70 put is 75 cents with strong support at $73.50.

Company Info:

CNOOC Limited is a producer of offshore crude oil and natural gas and an independent oil and gas exploration and production company. It mainly engages in oil and natural gas exploration, development, production and sales. The Company has four major oil production areas offshore China, which are Bohai Bay, Western South China Sea, Eastern South China Sea and East China Sea. It is an offshore oil producer in Indonesia. The Company also has certain upstream assets in regions, such as Africa and Australia. As of December 31, 2005, it owned net proved reserves of approximately 2.36 billion barrels-of-oil equivalent (BOE) and its annual average net production was 424,108 barrels-of-oil equivalent per day (BOEPD).

CEO does not have LEAPS.

Breakdown target: $80 triggered 9/11

Position: March $90 Call CEO-CS @ $2.40

SU $67.36 Suncor Energy

Suncor has taken a hit from the fall of oil prices despite being a very low cost oil sands producer. Suncor is planning on doubling their output over the next couple of years and you can bet it will be worth more than $63 a bbl. Options are expensive but this company has no geopolitical risk and massive reserves for decades into the future.

Insurance put:

Jan $60 puts are $2.65 while Dec $60 are only $2.10. I hate to spend that much money in either case but we do have a $14 LEAP. The Dec put is 90 days out and that should be enough to get us past any rough spots.

Buy Dec $60 Put SU-XL currently $2.10, no stop

Company Info:

Suncor Energy Inc. (Suncor), formerly Suncor Inc., is a Canadian integrated energy company that explores for, acquires, develops, produces and markets crude oil and natural gas, transports and refines crude oil and markets petroleum and petrochemical products. Periodically, the Company also markets third-party petroleum products. Suncor also carries on energy trading activities focused principally on buying and selling futures contracts and other derivative instruments, based on the commodities the Company produces. The Company has four principal operating business units: Oil Sands; Natural Gas; Energy Marketing and Refining, Canada, and Refining and Marketing. During the year ended December 31, 2005, the Company produced approximately 206,100 barrels of oil equivalent (BOE) per day, comprised of 174,500 barrels per day (bpd) of crude oil and natural gas liquids and 190 million cubic feet per day (mmcf/d) of natural gas.

Breakdown target: $70 (triggered 9/11)

Position: 2009 $80 LEAP Call OYX-AP @ $14.30

SLB $56.28 Schlumberger

SLB should benefit from the massive amount of drilling underway and new projects currently on the boards. New discoveries are being made almost daily and rig counts are climbing each week. SLB is worldwide and is expanding its business in the Middle East.

Insurance Put:

Buy Jan $50 Put SLB-MJ currently $2.00, no stop


Company Info:

Schlumberger Limited (Schlumberger) is an oilfield services company, supplying technology, project management and information solutions. Schlumberger consists of two business segments: Schlumberger Oilfield Services and WesternGeco. Schlumberger Oilfield Services is an oilfield services company supplying a range of technology services and solutions to the international oil and gas industry. WesternGeco, 70% owned by Schlumberger and 30% owned by Baker Hughes, is an advanced surface seismic company.

SLB has decent support at $60 and again at $55. SLB said business was booming in its July earnings release and yet it still sold off. I targeted $57 for an initial position based on the July dip. June's support at $55 held filling $55 as our secondary target.

Breakdown target: $57 - 1/2 position @ $8.60 (9/11)
Breakdown target: $55 - 1/2 position @ $8.00 (9/12)

Position: 2009 $70 LEAP Call VWY-AN @ $8.30

NBR $30.04 Nabors Industries

Nabors was a strong presenter at the recent energy conference as per the comments below. Support is $30 and the LEAP is cheap. We are not going to buy insurance because this company is so undervalued it is ridiculous. Once the herd catches on we will be wishing we had a larger position.

Company Info:

Nabors Industries Ltd. (Nabors) is a land drilling contractor with almost 600 land drilling rigs. The Company conducts oil, gas and geothermal land drilling operations in the United States Lower 48 states, Alaska, Canada, South and Central America, the Middle East, the Far East and Africa. It is also one of the land well servicing and workover contractors in the United States and Canada. The Company owns approximately 565-land workover and well-servicing rigs in the United States, primarily in the Southwestern and Western United States, and approximately 215-land workover and well-servicing rigs in Canada. Nabors is a provider of offshore platform workover and drilling rigs, and owns 43 platform, 19 jack-up units and three barge rigs in the United States and multiple international markets.

Nabors said they are not seeing any weakness in rig pricing and have more than 100 new rigs on order. They said day rates were still climbing and the international and offshore business was strong enough to contract for terms long enough to recover 100% of the rig costs in most instances. With the strong emphasis on gas drilling rig backlogs for deep rigs were up to three years in some cases.

Link to recent presentation: http://tinyurl.com/o5jmy

Support is $30 post reorganization. I am willing to buy a cheap 2009 LEAP and forget it.

Breakdown target: $30 - triggered 9/12
Position: 2009 $40 LEAP Call VRB-AH @ $4.50

No insurance

Tradestation Chart of NBR

UPL $44.47 Ultra Petroleum

As far as I am concerned Ultra is the premier gas producer in the US. There may be larger companies but after listening to two annual presentations I don't believe anybody does it any better. They have a premier location in the Pindale Anticline and Jonah Field with more than 11,000 drilling locations already mapped out. There is pipeline to the field and they have 3-5 TCF of recoverable gas in the ground with more reserves highly probable.

They have hedged nearly all their production but retained upside capability. They will be mostly immune from the current gas price implosion but they will be painted by the same broad brush as the rest of the gas crowd. For that reason we will take out an insurance policy.

Insurance Put:

Buy Dec $40 Put UPL-MH currently $2.85 (I expect this to double)

Company Info:

Ultra Petroleum Corp. (Ultra) is an oil and gas company engaged in the development, production, operation, exploration and acquisition of oil and gas properties. The Company's operations are focused primarily in the Green River Basin of southwest Wyoming and Bohai Bay, offshore China. As of December 31, 2005, Ultra owned interests in approximately 148,007 gross acres in Wyoming covering approximately 230 square miles. The Company owns working interests in approximately 330 gross productive wells in this area and is operator of 53% of the 330 gross wells. Its domestic operations are focused on developing and expanding a tight gas sand project located in the Green River Basin in southwest Wyoming. During the year ended December 31, 2005, the Company's Wyoming production was approximately 87.4% of total oil and natural gas production on a thousand cubic feet of natural gas equivalent (MCFE) basis and 98.5% of the Company's estimated net proved reserves were in Wyoming on an MCFE basis.

Link to their recent conference presentation:
http://tinyurl.com/kn5cb

Breakdown target: $45.00 - Entered on 9/12 update

Position: 2009 $60 LEAP Call OZH-AL @ $10.60

SUN $61.79 Sunoco

Sunoco is a strong refiner and marketer and includes many products not sold by other refiners. SUN is strongly profitable and will continue to outperform. However, as a refiner it is susceptible to the volatility in oil prices. Once past this current volatility I expect SUN to eventually make new highs well before our 2009 LEAP matures.

Insurance Put:

Buy Jan $55 Put SUN-MK currently $2.40 I expect it to double

Company Info:

Sunoco, Inc. (Sunoco), operates through its subsidiaries, as a petroleum refiner and marketer, and chemicals manufacturer with interests in logistics and cokemaking. The Company's petroleum refining and marketing operations include the manufacturing and marketing of a range of petroleum products, including fuels, lubricants and petrochemicals. Sunoco's chemical operations include the manufacturing, distribution and marketing of commodity and intermediate petrochemicals. The petroleum refining and marketing, and chemicals and logistics operations are conducted principally in the eastern half of the United States. Sunoco's cokemaking operations are conducted in Virginia, Indiana and Ohio. The Company operates in five business segments: Refining and Supply, Retail Marketing, Chemicals, Logistics and Coke.

Breakdown target: $62 Entered on 9/12 update

Position: 2009 $70 LEAP Call VUN-AN @ $13.50

PXP $39.80 Plains Exploration

We entered 1/2 position in the 9/12 update and we are still waiting for a touch of $37 to enter the second half. PXP has a decent chart compared to the other oil companies. It recently sold off non-core assets to concentrate on its high probability production areas. I expect it to rebound quickly once oil finds a bottom.

Options are cheap so I am really reaching out on the insurance to Feb-2007. This should provide a really strong comfort factor.

Insurance Put: Buy Feb $35 Put PXP-NG currently $1.55

Company Info:

Plains Exploration & Production Company (PXP) is an independent oil and gas company primarily engaged in the activities of acquiring, developing, exploiting, exploring and producing oil and gas properties in the United States. The Company owns oil and gas properties in six states with principal operations: the Los Angeles (LA) and San Joaquin Basins onshore California; the Santa Maria Basin offshore California; the Gulf Coast Basin onshore and offshore Louisiana, including the Gulf of Mexico, and the Val Verde portion of the greater Permian Basin in Texas. In April 2005, PXP acquired California producing oil and gas properties from a private company. In September 2005, the Company acquired Point Arguello Unit, Rocky Point development project and related facilities, offshore California, from subsidiaries of Chevron U.S.A. Inc. In May 2005, the Company closed the sale to XTO Energy, Inc. of interests in producing properties located in East Texas and Oklahoma.

Entered on 9/12: 1/2 position
Breakdown target: $37 for second 1/2 position

Position: 2009 $50 LEAP Call ZXL-AJ @ 7.50

FST $30.00 Forest Oil

This is one of my favorite companies after listening to their presentation at the recent energy conference. Everything they said made sense and the stock appears to be a bargain price. Forest recently sold their offshore assets and distributed the assets to shareholders knocking $20 off the price with the special dividend. They consolidated all their efforts on the North American continent in productive fields with minimal risk and large upside potential. Listen/read their presentation and I think you will agree.

Link to their conference presentation: http://tinyurl.com/ggzmv

No insurance due to cheap LEAP


Company Info:

Forest Oil Corporation (Forest) is an independent oil and gas company engaged in the acquisition, exploration, development, and production of natural gas and liquids primarily in North America. At December 31, 2005, Forest held interests in approximately 3,900 net oil and gas wells in the United States and Canada and sold 165.2 billion cubic feet of natural gas equivalent of oil and gas, or an average of 453 million cubic feet of natural gas equivalent per day during ther year ended December 31, 2005. Approximately 84% of the Company's total production was in the United States, and 16% was in Canada. In the United States, Forest's production of natural gas is generally sold in the areas where it is produced or at nearby pooling points. In Canada, the Company's natural gas production is sold by its subsidiary, Canadian Forest Oil Ltd., either through a joint venture with other producers, which is a long-term commitment, or under direct sales contracts or spot contracts.

Forest completed a major divestiture back in March of their offshore properties and made a major distribution to shareholders knocking -$20 off the stock price. Since early May the stock has been stuck in the $30-$35 range as investors digest their new onshore exploration focus. The change in direction appears to have confused many and the sharp drop in stock price probably confuses new investors. Their presentation at the energy conference made good sense to me and I think it was the right move. Here is the link to their conference presentation: http://tinyurl.com/ggzmv

Breakdown target: $30 entered on 9/12 update

Position: 2009 $40 LEAP Call OJG-AH @ 4.50

No insurance

XTO $40.63 XTO Energy

XTO was another presenter at the recent energy conference and I became a believer. They are heavily into natural gas so we can expect some further volatility as gas prices dip in late September.

Insurance Put: Feb $35 Put XTO-NG currently $1.40

Company Info:

XTO Energy Inc. is engaged in the acquisition, development, exploitation and exploration of producing oil and gas properties, and in the production, processing, marketing and transportation of oil and natural gas in the United States. The Company's proved reserves are principally located in the Eastern Region, including the East Texas Basin and northwestern Louisiana; North Texas Region, including the Barnett Shale; San Juan Region; Permian and South Texas Region; Mid-Continent and Rocky Mountain Region, and Middle Ground Shoal Field of Alaska's Cook Inlet. As of December 31, 2005, its estimated proved reserves were 6.09 trillion cubic feet (Tcf) of natural gas, 47.4 million barrels (Bbls) of natural gas liquids and 208.7 million Bbls of oil. During the year ended December 31, 2005, the Company's average daily production was 1,033,143 thousand cubic feet (Mcf) of gas, 10,445 Bbls of natural gas liquids and 39,051 Bbls of oil. In April 2005, it acquired Antero Resources Corporation.

XTO was a presenter at the recent energy conference and I was impressed with their outlook and direction. I believe their stock is under priced already but with the impending drop in gas prices as storage fills up I was hoping to buy them cheaper. Link to presentation: http://tinyurl.com/qorbr

Breakdown target: $40 - Entered in 9/12 update

Position: 2009 $50 LEAP Call OUO-AJ @ $6.50

Insurance Put: Feb $35 Put XTO-NG currently $1.40

VLO $50.30 Valero Energy

Valero is crumbling with the rest of the refiners as oil prices drop. However, most people forget that Valero buys oil $10-$12 cheaper than the rest of the pack. They can process the heavy sour crude from Saudi Arabia, which sells at a steep discount. They will always make more money than the rest of the refiners due to this competitive edge. That gives them an extra $10 crack spread per bbl. Support is currently $47.50 but with oil's potential to break $60 we will be using insurance.

Insurance Put: Buy Jan $45 Put VLO-MI currently $1.80


Company Info:

Valero Energy Corporation (Valero) owns and operates 18 refineries located in the United States, Canada and Aruba that produce refined products, such as reformulated gasoline (RFG), gasoline meeting the specifications of the California Air Resources Board (CARB), CARB diesel fuel, low-sulfur diesel fuel and oxygenates (liquid hydrocarbon compounds containing oxygen). The Company also produces conventional gasolines, distillates, jet fuel, asphalt, petrochemicals, lubricants and other refined products. Its business is organized into two segments: refining and retail. The refining segment includes refining operations, wholesale marketing, product supply and distribution, and transportation operations. The retail segment is segregated into two geographic regions: the U.S. System and the Northeast System. On September 1, 2005, Valero completed the merger of Premcor Inc. with and into Valero Energy Corporation.


Breakdown target: $47.50 - triggered 9/15

Position: 2009 $60 LEAP Call VHB-AL @ $9.30

 


Play Updates

Existing Plays

PBR - $79.25 - Petroleo Brasileiro

Petrobras continued its decline from the prior week on its dispute with Bolivia but it appears they are winning. The Bolivian government suspended the measure that would have given Bolivia almost total control of the extraction and refining of Bolivian gas and oil. After a heated meeting with the Brazilian energy minister the Brazilian owned Petrobras was exempted from the controls at least temporarily. Petrobras refines 90% of the fuel used in Bolivia and is the biggest investor in Bolivia energy. Talks have been rescheduled for Oct 9th, eight days after the Brazilian elections. Petrobras has invested $1.5 billion in Bolivia since the mid 1990s and Bolivia is trying to nationalize their investment. The day after the suspension was announced the Bolivian Energy Minister quit in protest.

I believe this will work out where Brazil gets significant concessions but Petrobras will lose majority control in Bolivia thanks to the influence of Hugo Chavez on Evo Morales. Petrobras could walk away from the entire country and survive but they do receive significant cash flow from operations in Bolivia.

Continue to hold the Jan-$70 insurance put with no stop.


Company Info:

Petroleo Brasileiro S.A. - Petrobras (Petrobras) is a mixed-capital enterprise of which a majority of voting capital must be owned by the Brazilian Government. The Company is engaged in a range of oil and gas activities, which include segments such as exploration and production, refining, transportation and marketing and distribution. The Company operates 95 platforms for production (72 fixed and 23 floating), 16 refineries, 30.318 kilometers of pipeline and 6,154 filling stations spread across the national territory. In addition, to its position in Brazil, Petrobras is present in 15 countries, such as Angola, Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, the United States, Iran, Mexico, Nigeria, Paraguay, Peru, Tanzania, Uruguay and Venezuela. It also operates backup support of offices in New York, Tokyo, China and Singapore.

Petrobras has decent support at $85 and again at $80. I would like to see $80 again but we will monitor any drop for a hint of rebound. Try not to catch the knife.

Breakdown target: $85 hit 9/08
Position: 2009 $100 LEAP Call VDW-AT @ $14.90

Insurance put:
9/11 January $70 PBR-MN @ $1.80

DO - $70.84 - Diamond Offshore

Diamond gave back its gains on the Gulf of Mexico discovery news but continues to hold just over support at $70.

Maintain a $60 profit stop on the October $70 insurance put.


Company Info:

Diamond Offshore Drilling Inc. (Diamond Offshore) provides contract drilling services to the energy industry worldwide and is also engaged in deepwater drilling with a fleet of 44 offshore drilling rigs. The Company's fleet consists of 30 semisubmersibles, 13 jack-ups and one drillship. The Company's offers a range of services worldwide in various markets, including the deep water, harsh environment, conventional semisubmersible and jack-up markets. The Company provides offshore drilling services to a customer base that includes private and independent oil and gas companies and government-owned oil companies.

Breakdown target triggered @ $70 (8/29)
Position: 2009 $80 LEAP Call VCT-AP @ 14.20

Insurance Put:
Position: October $70 put DO-VN @ $1.65

CSX - $31.63 - CSX Corp

CSX rallied for the week well over prior congestion. No complaints here but the transports in general are still under pressure despite $63 oil.

Maintain a $25 profit stop on the Nov-$30 insurance put.


Company Info:

CSX Corporation (CSX) based in Jacksonville, Florida, owns companies providing rail, intermodal and rail-to-truck transload services that combine to form transportation companies, connecting more than 70 ocean, river and lake ports. CSX's principal operating company, CSX Transportation Inc. (CSXT), operates the railroad in the eastern United States with approximately 21,000-mile rail network linking commercial markets in 23 states, the District of Columbia, and the Canadian provinces of Ontario and Quebec. CSX Intermodal Inc. (Intermodal) is a coast-to-coast intermodal transportation provider, an integrated intermodal company serving customers from origin to destination with its own truck and terminal operations, plus a dedicated domestic container fleet. Containers and trailers are loaded and unloaded from trains, with trucks providing the link between intermodal terminals and the customer.

Position: 2009 $35 LEAP Call OBC-AG @ $4.90

Insurance put:
9/11 November $30 Put CSX-WF @ $1.40

Entry (9/03)

WLT - $48.70 - Walter Industries

Walter got whacked for a -$3 loss after Intercontinental Coal (ICO) issued a profit warning. It was strictly an ICO problem with a mine closing but coal stocks in general were slaughtered. Live by the sector news, die by the sector news even if your coal is not used for generating electricity. Walter has two presentations at investor conferences in the coming week so hopefully things will improve.

Maintain a profit stop on the Dec $45 insurance put at $40.


Company Info:

Walter Industries, Inc. (Walter) is a diversified company with seven operating segments: Mueller, Anvil, Industrial Products, Natural Resources, Homebuilding, Financing and Other. The Company's seven segments are further grouped into Water Products, Natural Resources, Homebuilding and Financing, and Other. The Water Products group, which consists of Mueller, Anvil and Industrial Products segments, manufactures water infrastructure and flow control products. The Natural Resources segment consists of coal mining and methane gas operations. Walter markets and supervises the construction of detached, single-family residential homes, primarily in the southern United States, through the Homebuilding segment. The Financing segment provides mortgage financing on such homes and purchases mortgages originated by others. The Other segment includes the manufacturing of foundry and furnace coke, slag fiber and specialty chemicals, as well as the Company's land division.

Breakout target: $52 triggered 8/23
Position 2009 $60 LEAP Call OZE-AL @ $11.50

Insurance put:
9/11 December $45 Put WLT-XI @ $1.30

Entered $52 8/23

ATPG - $37.23 - ATP Oil and Gas Corp ** No Stop **

ATP continues to be a relative winner in the sector with only a -1.50 drop for the week. It is holding in a narrow range above support at $35 where we have an insurance put. No risk here.

Insurance put: No stop on the put.

Company Info:
ATP Oil & Gas Corporation (ATP), incorporated in 1991, is an offshore oil and gas development and production company operating in the Gulf of Mexico and the North Sea. The primary objectives of the company are to develop already-discovered reserves not strategic to major or exploration-oriented oil and gas companies and to achieve a high rate of return for ATP from such low-risk developmental projects. ATPs expansion from operations on the Outer Continental Shelf into deepwater in the Gulf of Mexico and extension into the North Sea significantly increase the opportunities for the company. ATP became a public company in February, 2001 and is traded on the NASDAQ under the symbol ATPG.
ATP operates exclusively offshore and has addressed projects in Gulf of Mexico water depths from 12 feet in the Eugene Island Area to deepwater 1350 feet of water in Garden Banks; in the North Sea projects range from 50 to 200 feet of water depth. ATP understands this environment and applies advanced sub-sea technology to speed up development and lower capital costs. ATP has been frequently recognized for pushing existing technology to a higher level and is a leader of companies utilizing subsea technology and performing its operations in an environmentally sound manner.
At December 2002, ATP had leasehold and other interests in 50 offshore blocks, 29 platforms and 70 wells, including six subsea wells, in the federal waters of the Gulf of Mexico. ATP operates 55 of these 70 wells, including all of the subsea wells, and 76% of our offshore platforms. ATP also has interests in seven offshore blocks and one company operated well in the UK Sector North Sea and one offshore block in the Dutch Sector North Sea.
You can listen to the full presentation from the recent energy conference at the link below. Use the Windows media option to view the slides. (They will not change automatically) http://tinyurl.com/n3ffr

ATP is getting plenty of airtime. Cramer had an on-air interview with the CFO of ATP. You can watch the video here after a brief commercial interlude. Definitely a compelling case to buy ATP. http://tinyurl.com/nm3rw

Position:
8/20 2009 $40 LEAP Call VCL-AH @ $11.70

Insurance put:
9/06 Position Dec $35 PUT HKU-XG @ $1.50

Entry $38.16 (8/20)

MDR - $41.90 - McDermott ** Stop loss $38 **

Dang! MDR hit an air pocket and lost -$6 for the week to return to support at $42. Fortunately we had a September $45 put which we closed on Wednesday for $2.80 for a double. This covered the cost of the new October put we added on Monday for $1.40. Unfortunately the LEAP also lost ground but we broke even on the deal thinks to the September put.

Maintain a profit stop on the Oct-$45 put at $38.


Current recommendation: Buy above $40

Company Info:

J. Ray McDermott is a leading provider of engineering, procurement, construction, and installation services for offshore oil and gas field developments worldwide. McDermott International, Inc. is a leading worldwide energy services company. McDermott's subsidiaries provide engineering, construction, installation, procurement, research, manufacturing, environmental systems, project management and facility management services to a variety of customers in the energy and power industries, including the U.S. Department of Energy.

3:2 split on June 1st reduced the strike price by 1/3 and increased the contract size to 150 shares.

Position 2008 $75 LEAP Call YAE-AO @ $12.50
Split into 2008 $50.00 LEAP YBB-AJ @ $8.33
Cost increase put close 6/26 +1.40, cost = $9.73
Cost decrease put close 9/12 +1.40, cost = $8.33

Insurance Put:
9/11 October $45 Put MDR-VI currently $1.40

Position closed:
8/13 Sept $45 Put MDR-UI @ $1.40, exit $2.80 9/12. +1.40

Position closed:
6/13 Aug $36.625 Put MHH-TV @ $2.00, exit .60 6/26, -1.40

Position: June $60 Put MDR-RL @ $1.25 (5/22)
Split into June $40 Put MHH-RH @ $0.83, expired worthless 6/16


Entry $44.02 (5/18)

PTR - $107.30 - Petrochina ** No Stop **

PTR broke even for the week despite the drop in oil prices. This stock is stronger than XOM today and I am very happy with its performance in the face of imploding oil. China also asked the US to joint venture with them in developing new oil fields. Will wonders never cease?

We were stopped on the September $110 put at $106 and $5.00 for a profit of $2.60. We added a December $100 put last week and that cost is now covered.

Maintain a profit stop on the Dec insurance put at $90


Current recommendation: Buy under $110

Earnings schedule: August 24th, $10.1 billion, +29%

Prior commentary:

Petrochina is the fourth largest energy company in the world. It is a government monopoly but it acts like an independent. PTR is aggressively acquiring leases and rapidly expanding its drilling program. It currently has over 10.9 billion bbls of proven reserves and more than 44 TCF of gas. Warren Buffet owns $2.3 billion of PTR stock. It trades at less than $12 per BOE and has a 3.5% dividend yield. PTR owns 14,000 service stations and has 2,900 franchised stations. It is majority owned by China and has unlimited capital for expansion if China likes the deal. I expect several acquisitions by PTR over the next couple years but with a $208 billion market cap and China as the owner it will not be a target itself. China would never give up control of those oil assets. PTR saw its output rise +6.3% in Q1 to 267.7 million bbls when most companies were posting declines in reserves and production. Gas output rose +35.6%. PTR owns 75% of the oil and gas reserves in China and supplies 40% of its needs. This is as close to a permanent lock on a profit as we can get given the rapid growth of China's economy.

Cramer has been pounding the table on PTR saying it was not afraid to drill in communist countries, places torn apart by strife or run by two-bit dictators like Chavez or Morales. With the Chinese government and military behind it there is little chance of somebody trying to confiscate PTR assets.

Company info:

PetroChina Company Limited operates a range of petroleum and related activities through four primary business segments: Exploration and Production Segment, Refining and Marketing Segment, Chemicals and Marketing Segment, and Natural Gas and Pipeline Segment. The activities include the exploration, development, production and sales of crude oil and natural gas; the refining, transportation, storage and marketing of crude oil and petroleum products; the production and sales of basic petrochemical products, derivative chemical products and other chemical products, and the transmission of natural gas, crude oil and refined products, and the sales of natural gas.

Position: 2008 $120 LEAP Call LJC-AD @ $16.20
Cost adjustment: Close short Dec $115 call +1.30 = $17.50
Cost adjustment: Close long July $90 puts +3.00 = $20.50
Cost adjustment: Close long Sept $110 put -2.60 = $17.90

Insurance put: (9/11)
Position: December $100 Put PTR-XT @ $2.20

Insurance put: (8/13)
Position closed:
Sept $110 Put PTR-UB @ $2.40, stop @ $106 @ $5.00, +2.60

Insurance combo: Closed
Short: Dec $115 Call PTR-LC @ $3.20, 6/13, exit $4.50, -1.30
Long: (2) July $90 Puts PTR-SR @ $3.70, 6/13, exit $0.70, -3.00

Insurance puts: (Closed 6/7)
Closed: June $105 PUT PTR-RA, @ $4.20 (5/22), exit 6/7 @ $4.30

Entry 5/14 $116.20

CCJ - $38.49 - Cameco ** No stop **

CCJ gave back some of its gains but remain in its recent range. The spike from the prior week faded but there is new talk of another wave of nuclear plants. We will continue to hold although it is very boring. Gold is a buy product of uranium mining and the price of gold was probably the destructive force on CCJ last week.

Current recommendation: Buy @ $35

Earnings: July 27th, +138%

Original Play Description:

We were triggered on the breakout at $72.50 on Monday and again on the $67 breakdown target on Wednesday. Each trigger was for a 1/2 position giving us a full position with an average cost of $9.80 each. That turned out to be the closing price on Friday so if you missed either opportunity you did not miss anything. We are going to add another full position after CCJ splits on Feb-23rd.

This is my best single play in the list. Cameco just announced record earnings and raised their forecast for 2006 and beyond. They projected a +40% rise in revenue and a rise in margin from 23% to 28% for 2006. At the same time they announced a 2:1 split for Feb-23rd on the NYSE. They also raised the dividend to 32 cents from 24 cents payable on April 13th.

They also announced they were buying Zircatec for $108 million. Zircatec is a maker of nuclear fuel bundles for Canadian designed heavy water reactors. They said the acquisition would moderately boost 2006 earnings assuming no material changes in operations.

The combination of events including the purchase of Zircatec caused the stock to plunge from its all time high of $82.15 on Feb-1st to close at $69.97 on Friday Feb-3rd. That level remained support for the entire week through Feb-10th.

Company Info:

Cameco Corporation is engaged in exploring, developing, mining and milling uranium ore to produce uranium concentrates. The Company is also a commercial converter of uranium concentrates (U3O8) to UF6 (uranium hexafluoride), as well as a supplier of services to convert uranium concentrates to UO2 (uranium dioxide). Cameco, through its subsidiaries, has a 31.6% limited partnership interest in Bruce Power Limited Partnership, which operates six nuclear reactors in Ontario, Canada. Cameco also owns 53% of Centerra Gold Inc. (TSX: CG), a growth-oriented gold mining and exploration company engaged in the acquisition, exploration, development and operation of gold properties in Central Asia, the former Soviet Union and other emerging markets.

Position: 2008 $40 LEAP LTA-AH @ $9.00 on 2/25.

No insurance put

 


Leaps Trader Watch List

I Bid $60

Our watch list took a substantial hit last week with the decline of oil to $62. Nearly all our positions were triggered and all we need now is a bounce. I do expect at least one more leg down before that happens. I would not complain if it didn't but we are prepared for it if it appears.

I would like to see $60 or less to grab another couple oil positions. I would like to see $4 gas to load up on a couple more gas positions before winter starts.

Of course I probably sound like a kid making out his Christmas list or walking down the isle at the candy store. Since we can't predict the future or impact future events it is up to us to be ready to react when and if they happen as we hope.

I am adding several more names to the watch list with wishful thinking entry points. If it appears they will not be hit I will adjust them late. At this point I would rather be late than early on future entries.

Jim Brown
 

Dropped Entries

None


New Watch List Entries

Current Watch List

LTR - Loews Corp

Loews Corporation is a holding company. The lines of business the subsidiaries are engaged include commercial property and casualty insurance (CNA Financial Corporation (CNA), a 91% owned subsidiary); production and sale of cigarettes (Lorillard, Inc. (Lorillard), a wholly owned subsidiary); operation of interstate natural gas transmission pipeline systems (Boardwalk Pipeline Partners, LP (Boardwalk Pipeline), an 85%-owned subsidiary); operation of offshore oil and gas drilling rigs (Diamond Offshore Drilling, Inc. (Diamond Offshore), a 54%-owned subsidiary); operation of hotels (Loews Hotels Holding Corporation (Loews Hotels), a wholly owned subsidiary), and distribution and sale of watches and clocks (Bulova Corporation (Bulova), a wholly owned subsidiary).

Breakdown target: $36.50 - Firm target

Buy 2009 $40 LEAP Call VRH-AH

*************************

APC - Anadarko Petroleum

Anadarko Petroleum Corporation (Anadarko) is an oil and gas exploration and production company. Major areas of operations are located in the United States, primarily in Texas, Louisiana, the mid-continent region and the western states, Alaska and in the deep waters of the Gulf of Mexico, as well as in Canada and Algeria. Anadarko also has production in Venezuela and Qatar. It actively markets natural gas, oil and natural gas liquids (NGLs) and owns and operates gas-gathering systems in its core producing areas. In addition, the Company engages in the hard minerals business through non-operated joint ventures and royalty arrangements in several coal, trona (natural soda ash) and industrial mineral mines located on lands within and adjacent to its Land Grant holdings. The Land Grant is an eight-million-acre strip running through portions of Colorado, Wyoming and Utah where the Company owns most of its fee mineral rights.

Breakdown target: $42.50 - Firm target

Buy 2009 $50 LEAP Call OCP-AJ

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CHK - Chesapeake Energy

Chesapeake Energy Corporation (Chesapeake) is an oil and natural gas exploration and production company. It is engaged in the acquisition, exploration and development of properties for the production of crude oil and natural gas from underground reservoirs, and the marketing of natural gas and oil for other working interest owners in properties it operates. As of December 31, 2005, the Company owned interests in approximately 30,600 producing oil and gas wells, which were producing approximately 1.5 billions of cubic feet equivalents (bcfe) per day. On November 14, 2005, Chesapeake acquired Columbia Energy Resources, LLC and its subsidiaries, including Columbia Natural Resources, LLC (CNR) and its natural gas reserves, acreage and mid-stream assets. In 2006, the Company acquired oil and natural gas assets from private companies located in the Barnett Shale, South Texas, Permian Basin, Mid-Continent and Ark-La-Tex regions. It also acquired an Oklahoma-based trucking company in 2006.

CHK appears to be headed for a retest of support at $27 but I am hoping for a drop all the way back to $25.

Breakdown Target: $25.00

Buy 2009 $30 LEAP Call VEC-AF

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ECA - Encana

EnCana Corporation is a natural gas producer in North America. It is a holder of natural gas and oil resource lands onshore North America. The Company is also engaged in select exploration and production activities internationally. EnCana operates under two main divisions: Upstream and Midstream & Marketing. The Upstream division manages EnCana's exploration for, and development and production of, natural gas, crude oil and natural gas liquids (NGLs) and other related activities. EnCana's Midstream & Marketing division encompasses the Corporation's market optimization activities and remaining midstream assets. EnCana is in the process of divesting the majority of its remaining midstream assets, including its natural gas storage business and the Entrega Pipeline.

Strong support at $40 should be our first target with a backup at $35 for a second position. Encana is attempting to sell some midstream assets and that could impact the stock price significantly when it happens.

Breakdown target: $40 1/2 position
Breakdown target: $35 1/2 position

Buy 2009 $50 LEAP Call ZBM-AJ


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DVN - Devon Energy

Devon Energy Corporation (Devon) is an independent energy company engaged primarily in oil and gas exploration, development and production, the acquisition of producing properties, the transportation of oil, gas and natural gas liquids (NGLs) and the processing of natural gas. Devon operates oil and gas properties in the United States, Canada and various regions located outside North America, including Azerbaijan, Brazil, China, Egypt, Russia and West Africa. In addition to Devon's oil and gas operations, it has marketing and midstream operations. These include the marketing of natural gas, crude oil and NGLs, and the construction and operation of pipelines, storage and treating facilities and gas processing plants. The Company sells its gas production to a range of customers, including pipelines, utilities, gas marketing firms, industrial users and local distribution companies.

Devon is a 25% partner in the new BP discovery in the Gulf. This is a huge windfall for Devon but it is also a long way off before any income is received. Hopefully the initial spike will fade and we can get it cheap.

Breakdown target: $55

Buy 2009 $70 LEAP Call VVH-AN


**********************

COP - Conoco Phillips

ConocoPhillips is an international, integrated energy company. The business is organized into six operating segments: Exploration and Production (E&P) segment primarily explores for, produces and markets crude oil, natural gas and natural gas liquids on a worldwide basis; Midstream segment gathers and processes natural gas produced by ConocoPhillips and others, and fractionates and markets natural gas liquids, primarily in the United States, Canada and Trinidad; Refining and Marketing (R&M) segment purchases, refines, markets and transports crude oil and petroleum products, mainly in the United States, Europe and Asia; LUKOIL Investment segment consists of its equity investment in OAO LUKOIL, an international, integrated oil and gas company in Russia; Chemicals segment manufactures and markets petrochemicals and plastics on a worldwide basis, and Emerging Businesses segment encompasses the development of new businesses beyond its traditional operations.

Conoco has returned to support at $58 but I am betting it will collapse once oil hits $60. COP is the most undervalued major according to Forbes with a PE of only 5.5. I believe $50 is a major support level that will be revisited soon. If so we are going to take a position despite the lack of a recent uptrend on their chart. COP had a lot working against it in 2006 and those factors have faded.

Breakdown target: $51

Buy 2009 $60 LEAP Call OJP-AL

**********************

CVX - Chevron Corp

Chevron Corp. (Chevron), formerly ChevronTexaco Corporation, manages its investments in subsidiaries and affiliates, and provides administrative, financial and management support to the United States and foreign subsidiaries that engage in integrated petroleum operations, chemicals operations, coal mining, power and energy services. Petroleum operations consist of exploring for, developing and producing crude oil and natural gas; refining crude oil into finished petroleum products; marketing crude oil, natural gas and the many products derived from petroleum, and transporting crude oil, natural gas and petroleum products by pipeline, marine vessel, motor equipment and rail car. Chemicals operations include the manufacture and marketing, by affiliates, of commodity petrochemicals for industrial uses, and the manufacture and marketing, by a consolidated subsidiary, of fuel and lubricating oil additives.

Like Conoco Chevron has failed to impress investors over the last year. There is strong support at $55 and I believe it will retest that level before the fall is over. Chevron did make a like discovery to the BP find in the Gulf but it was under reported and Chevron's boost promptly faded. If we can buy it right we will bet on future discoveries in the same area.

Breakdown target: $55

Buy 2009 $60 LEAP Call VCH-AL

**********************

ATI - Allegheny Tech

Allegheny Technologies Incorporated (ATI) is a producer of specialty materials for global markets. The Company operates in three business segments. The High Performance Metals segment produces, converts and distributes a range of high-performance alloys, including nickel and cobalt-based alloys and super alloys, titanium and titanium-based alloys, exotic alloys, such as zirconium, hafnium, niobium, nickel-titanium and their related alloys. The Flat-Rolled Products segment produces, converts and distributes stainless steel, nickel-based alloys, and titanium and titanium-based alloys, in a variety of product forms, including plate, sheet, strip, engineered strip and Precision Rolled Strip products. The Engineered Products segment produces tungsten powder, tungsten heavy alloys, tungsten carbide materials and carbide cutting tools. On April 5, 2005, the Company acquired Garryson Limited, a producer of tungsten carbide burrs, rotary tooling, and specialty abrasive wheels and discs.

Yes, ATI is into high performance metals. They are also the only major manufacturer of very high strength pipe capable of being used in wells like the new Gulf discoveries by BP and Chevron. Drilling 30,000 feet under 7500 feet of water requires extreme performance pipe for every stage of the underwater application. This pipe segment is rapidly growing for ATI and will become a major profit center over the next two years. There is strong support at $55 but I would like to try and tag it at $50 if possible.

Breakdown target $50

Buy 2009 $60 LEAP Call OYG-AL (it will be cheaper at $50)

**********************

RIG - Transocean Inc

Transocean Inc. (Transocean) is an international provider of offshore contract drilling services for oil and gas wells. As of March 2, 2006, it owned/had partial ownership interests in, or operated 89 mobile offshore and barge drilling units. Its fleet included 32 High-Specification semisubmersibles and drillships (floaters), 23 Other Floaters, 25 Jackup Rigs and nine Other Rigs. The Company's primary business is to contract these drilling rigs, related equipment and work crews primarily on a day-rate basis to drill oil and gas wells. It specializes in sectors of the offshore drilling business with a focus on deepwater and harsh environment drilling services. The Company also provides additional services, including integrated services.

There are only two major companies that can drill in 7500 ft of water. DO and RIG. We already own DO and I would like to get a piece of RIG as well. RIG has already announced a long term contract to construct and operate a new drillship for BP and odds are good there will be more to follow once the other players want to start exploring their blocks. There is decent support at $65 but I am targeting a breakdown to $60 with stronger support at $55.

Breakdown target: $60

Buy 2009 $70 LEAP Call VOI-AN
 


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