Top Stock Picks 2017 – Michael Sprung on BNN’s Market Call – April 28th, 2017

Top Stock Picks 2017 Outlook
 

As we look back at the first 100 days of the Trump administration, we see a period filled with conflicting messages. The media has been prolific in their condemnation of Trump's policies but the capital markets have been more sanguine.  Sine the election in November, the US markets have enthusiastically embrace the promises of deregulation and lower taxes that were the cornerstones of the Trump campaign. The enthusiasm paused briefly when changes to health care met with resistance and investors realized that not all of the promises are likely to be easily forthcoming. The Canadian markets were not as robust. Weak energy prices and tepid economic growth were reflected in more range bound markets. European markets were a bit more robust as factories exhibited greater activity as was the case in much of Asia as exports from Taiwan, South Korea and China were up from a year ago.

Michael Sprung Top Picks BNN Market Call April 28 2017

Michael Sprung's Top Picks BNN Market Call: April 28, 2017

There is certainly reasons to be optimistic on the global economy as orders for capital equipment are on the rise and employment improves. It has been a long, hard climb out of the financial abyss of ten years ago as is often the case in financial crisis. The difficulty of the recovery has been reflected in large part in the rise of populist politics as evidenced by the Brexit vote and the election of Donald Trump. Europe faces a few key elections this year.

Politics and economic cycles are often out of sync. The politics of populism are not as accommodating to the concepts of free trade and globalization that have sown the seeds of the current recovery; yet those very politicians may point to the recovery and take credit where none is due, In fact they may sow the seeds of the next downturn.

We Canadians are very aware of these factors as we gear up for renegotiating the NAFTA agreement.

 

Top Stock Picks 2017


Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, CM-T, Owned by clients and personally, Last Purchase Sept 16, 2016 $101.00

CM is Canada's fifth largest bank by market capitalization. Over the better part of the past decade, management has concentrated on de-risking and shoring up the balance sheet largely by retrenching and focusing on core competencies. The bank is now the most profitable as measured by return on equity and has one of the strongest capital bases. The recent purchase of PrivateBancorp  establishes CM with a larger foothold in US. This is a well run, well managed bank and CM has paid a premium to make this purchase. Most recently, the share price has pulled back as concerns about the Canadian mortgage market have been in the spotlight. At current prices, the bank yields around 4.6%.

Suncor Energy, SU-T, Owned by clients, Last purchase March 2, 2016 $32.94

Suncor is Canada's largest integrated oil and gas company. Suncor has a strong production base with quality long-term assets, a strong balance sheet, and an integrated business model smoothing to some extent the cash flow from the various business segments. Management has been focused of increasing efficiencies and positioning the company for future growth. Over the remainder of the year, Fort Hills and Hebron will be coming online. Suncor has a strong balance sheet to support and expand operations. At current levels, the stock yields 3.1%.

Goldcorp, G-T, Owned by clients, Last Purchase March 30, 2017 $19.43

Goldcorp is one of North America's largest gold companies that  now beginning to reap the rewards of major capital spending over the past few years as Penasquito is in production. Joint ventures with Barrick and Teck Resources will assist in driving costs down over the next few years as management begins to prepare for future growth in Arizona and Chile.

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Suncor Energy (TSE:SU) to work with regulator after tailings pond plan is turned down

Canadian energy company Suncor Energy Inc (TSE:SU, Mkt cap 68.61B, Div/yield 0.32/3.11, EPS 0.25, Shares 1.67B) has pledged to work with the Alberta Energy Regulator (AER) after its oilsands tailings pond retirement plan was rejected.

Suncor energy tailings pond plan

Suncor Energy (TSE:SU) to work with regulator after tailings pond plan is turned down.

The application, which was submitted in April 2016, is a requirement under the Government of Alberta's Tailings Management Framework.

The regulator announced on Friday that the company's fluid tailings management proposal for its northern Alberta facilities did not satisfy regulatory requirements and it must submit a new plan.

Suncor had proposed to treat about 75% of its fluid tailings in a new dedicated disposal area using in-line flocculation followed by water-capping. However, in a four-page letter explaining its decision, the AER said that the company did not provide enough information about the associated risks, benefits and trade-offs.

This means that the regulator cannot properly assess whether the water-capping technology will result in an aquatic ecosystem in the time predicted.

Where unproven technology is proposed, applicants must consider alternatives. But the AER again said that Suncor did not provide "adequate information". Similarly, not enough evidence was provided with regard to its "ready to reclaim" criteria, which are expected to address a deposit's physical properties and environmental effects.

New rules introduced by the AER last year require all tailings ponds to be removed within 10 years of the end of a mine's life, according to the Canadian Press.

Suncor said that it will continue to work with the regulator "in order to move the regulatory process forward".

Suncor Energy Inc. (TSE:SU) is a Calgary, Alberta based integrated energy company. The Company is focused on developing Canada’s petroleum resource basin, Athabasca oil sands. The Company operates in three business segments: Oil Sands, Exploration and Production, and Refining and Marketing. The Company’s Oil Sands segment includes Oil Sands operations and Oil Sands ventures operations. Its Exploration and Production segment consists of offshore operations off the east coast of Canada and in the North Sea, and onshore assets in North America, Libya and Syria. The Company’s Refining and Marketing segment is engaged in Refining and Supply, and Downstream Marketing. In addition, the Company explores, for, acquires, develops, produces and markets crude oil and natural gas in Canada and internationally. The Company also transports and refines crude oil, and markets petroleum and petrochemical products primarily in Canada. More from Reuters »

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The opinions expressed here are ours alone. They are provided for information purposes only and are not tailored to the needs of any particular individual or company, are not an endorsement, recommendation, or sponsorship of any entity or security, and do not constitute investment advice. We strongly recommend that you seek advice from a qualified investment advisor before making any investment decision.

 

Teck Resources (TSE:TECK.B) and Suncor Energy (TSE:SU) raise cost estimate for Fort Hills oil sands project

Teck Resources Ltd (TSE:TECK.B) and Suncor Energy Inc (TSE:SU) have increased the cost estimate for their Fort Hills oil sands project.

Following a review of the schedule, project costs and throughput, Suncor, operator of the Fort Hills Energy Limited Partnership, which owns the project, stated that the overall cost of the project is now estimated to be between $16.5bn and $17.0bn, or about 10% more than forecast.

Teck TSE:TECK.B Suncor TSE:SU cost estimate Fort Hills oil sands project

Teck Resources (TSE:TECK.B) and Suncor Energy (TSE:SU) raise cost estimate for Fort Hills oil sands project

Teck Resources (TSE:TECK.B) and Suncor Energy (TSE:SU) raise cost estimate for Fort Hills oil sands project[/caption]While most of the project is progressing in line with the original plan and budget, last year's wildfires in Fort McMurray and construction changes have increased the capital cost estimate for the secondary extraction facility.

The project, located in the Athabasca oil sands region of northeastern Alberta, was more than 76% complete at the end of the fourth quarter of 2016, with two of the six major project areas (mining and infrastructure) turned over to operations. All major plant equipment and materials are now on site, and all major vessels and process modules have been installed. Shovels, trucks and equipment are mobilizing for operations.

According to Teck, the project remains on track to produce first oil in late 2017.

The cost per flowing barrel of bitumen is expected to remain at about $84,000 because nameplate capacity has been increased to 194,000 barrels per day (bpd) from 180,000 bpd.

Suncor holds a 50.8% interest in the Fort Hills Energy Limited Partnership, with 29.2% held by Total E&P Canada Limited and a 20% interest held by Teck.

Suncor's share of Fort Hills' remaining project capital cost is between $1.6bn and $1.8bn, the majority of which will be spent in 2017. Teck's share of project capital costs through to completion is now expected to be $805m, of which approximately $640m will be spent this year.

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We believe that successful investors focus on the quality of the assets they buy. Speculators focus on guessing the future prices. Like to learn more? Please contact us here>> The opinions expressed here are ours alone. They are provided for information purposes only and are not tailored to the needs of any particular individual or company, are not an endorsement, recommendation, or sponsorship of any entity or security, and do not constitute investment advice. We strongly recommend that you seek advice from a qualified investment advisor before making any investment decision.  

Oil Pipelines – Canadian Government approves two major pipeline projects

Oil Pipelines Canadian Government approved

Oil Pipelines – the Canadian Government has approved two major crude oil pipeline projects and rejected a third.

The Canadian Government has approved two major crude oil pipeline projects and rejected a third.
Minister of Natural Resources, Jim Carr, and Minister of Transport, Marc Garneau, announced on Tuesday that Kinder Morgan’s C$6.8bn Trans Mountain Expansion Project had been given the green light, subject to 157 conditions.

The Government has also approved Enbridge‘s Line 3 Replacement Project, subject to 37 conditions. Enbridge is planning to replace 1,067 km of existing pipeline from Hardisty, Alberta, to Gretna, Manitoba, to enhance the safety of the line and restore its original capacity of 760,000 barrels a day.

But another Enbridge project, the long-stalled Northern Gateway pipeline, will not proceed because it would result in crude oil tankers transiting through the sensitive ecosystem of the Douglas Channel, part of the Great Bear Rainforest, the Government said.

Enbridge welcomed the approval of the Line 3 replacement program, the largest project in its history at approximately C$7.5bn.

“We have strong support for the project from our communities along the route, including Indigenous communities,” the company said in a statement.

Commenting on the rejected Northern Gateway pipeline, the company expressed disappointment with the decision and said it was an important project to ensure Canada gets its resources to international markets.

“Northern Gateway also represented an unprecedented partnership with Indigenous people,” Enbridge continued. “The 31 Indigenous communities who had a one-third ownership in Northern Gateway stood to realize C$2bn in benefits to their communities and would have played an important stewardship role in the project.”

The Government also announced a moratorium on crude oil tankers along British Columbia’s northern coast.

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The opinions expressed here are ours alone. They are provided for information purposes only and are not tailored to the needs of any particular individual or company, are not an endorsement, recommendation, or sponsorship of any entity or security, and do not constitute investment advice. We strongly recommend that you seek advice from a qualified investment advisor before making any investment decision.

 

Wood Group helps Suncor Energy (TSE:SU) cut well pad costs

Suncor Energy Inc (TSE:SU, Mkt cap 60.94B, Div/yield 0.29/3.15, EPS -1.95, Shares 1.66B) has awarded a three-year contract to Wood Group for its cost-saving heavy oil well pad design.

Suncor Energy Wood Group Firebag

Wood Group helps Suncor Energy (TSE:SU) cut well pad costs

Wood Group said on Tuesday that its standard well pad design reduces Suncor’s well pad costs by at least 50%.

The Scottish-based company has received the first authorization under a recently signed multi-use agreement with Suncor Energy, for work to be completed at its Firebag site in Alberta, Canada, approximately 120 km northeast of Fort McMurray.

Wood Group developed its standard well pad design in response to growing concerns about escalating costs for in-situ heavy oil facilities, especially steam-assisted gravity drainage (SAGD) well pads. It uses the same design-one, build-many approach that Wood Group has applied successfully to other heavy oil and offshore facilities, the company explained.

The design delivers cost savings by eliminating much of the operator’s costs associated with engineering, procurement and project management. The design accommodates pad sizes of up to 12 well pairs and uses a drilling pattern with the production and steam injection wells in two parallel rows, and wells drilled at 10-meter spacing.

Robin Watson, chief executive of Wood Group, said in a statement: “Our standard well pad design provides heavy oil producers the opportunity to lower costs and increase profit margins, and offers a new design solution for heavy oil production.”

Over the life of a SAGD project, approximately two-thirds of all capital spending is on well pads and gathering line infrastructure. Suncor’s well pad facilities costs, which previously ranged from more than C$4m to C$9m per well pair, are now approximately C$2m per well pair using the Wood Group design.

Suncor Energy Inc. (TSE:SU) is a Calgary, Alberta based integrated energy company. The Company is focused on developing Canada’s petroleum resource basin, Athabasca oil sands. The Company operates in three business segments: Oil Sands, Exploration and Production, and Refining and Marketing. The Company’s Oil Sands segment includes Oil Sands operations and Oil Sands ventures operations. Its Exploration and Production segment consists of offshore operations off the east coast of Canada and in the North Sea, and onshore assets in North America, Libya and Syria. The Company’s Refining and Marketing segment is engaged in Refining and Supply, and Downstream Marketing. In addition, the Company explores, for, acquires, develops, produces and markets crude oil and natural gas in Canada and internationally. The Company also transports and refines crude oil, and markets petroleum and petrochemical products primarily in Canada. More from Reuters »

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We believe that clients gain from our focus on the long-term fundamentals and not chasing short-term trends. Like to learn more? Please contact us here>>

The opinions expressed here are ours alone. They are provided for information purposes only and are not tailored to the needs of any particular individual or company, are not an endorsement, recommendation, or sponsorship of any entity or security, and do not constitute investment advice. We strongly recommend that you seek advice from a qualified investment advisor before making any investment decision.