Collin Eaton joined the Houston Chronicle's team of energy reporters in 2013, after covering the financial industry for another publication. He writes mainly about U.S. oil companies and developments in international oil markets.

Article 1107
BP sanctions $9 billion deep-water Gulf project

BP has approved plans to spend $9 billion on a new oil-production platform at one of its largest deep-water fields in the Gulf of Mexico, the company said Thursday. The green light for the second phase of BP’s Mad Dog field comes three years after the company delayed plans to assemble a massive $20 ...

Saudi Arabia budget deficit climbs as OPEC talks

Saudi Arabia’s push for OPEC’s first oil production cut in eight years comes as its finances fall into disarray. The Saudi government’s budget deficit has ballooned to one-fifth of its economic output this year despite its $57 billion in spending cuts since oil prices collapsed. That’s about twice t ...

Oil stockpile slides, but prices stay flat

The amount of oil stored in U.S. tanks declined by 1.3 million barrels last week, the Energy Department said Wednesday, but crude prices remained flat. The decline came after two consecutive weekly inventory builds that began with a record increase of 14.4 million barrels last month. This past week, ...

Climbing oil prices shield most U.S. drillers from default, Fitch says

Rising oil prices have probably shielded most U.S. drillers from debt defaults next year, Fitch Ratings says. Energy companies have defaulted on $7.7 billion in leveraged loans, a certain category of higher-risk loans sold to investors, the credit rating agency said in a new report Tuesday. Fitch is ...

Oil field hiring could pick up next year, survey shows

Nearly a third of U.S. oil executives believe they’ll be able to hire new workers next year if the oil downturn eases further, a new survey shows. Executives acknowledged the expansion may prove difficult to draw skilled employees back to the oil patch after a two-year malaise that led to thou ...

Noble Energy cuts 60 jobs, mostly in Houston

Noble Energy recently cut 60 jobs, mostly in Houston, reducing staff levels in exploration and geoscience. The job cuts come as the Houston driller shifts resources to its most lucrative offshore exploration efforts and tries to increase the value of its onshore U.S. oil business. The job cuts inclu ...

U.S. oil stockpile rises by 5.3 million barrels

The nation’s oil stockpile increased by 5.3 million barrels last week, coming in well above the amount analysts had forecast, a new report shows. U.S. crude edged lower after the Energy Information Administration said U.S. commercial crude stocks have risen to a higher point than is usual this time ...

USGS: Wolfcamp shale holds 20 billion undiscovered barrels of oil

Drillers have wrung oil out of West Texas for a century, but there’s still plenty left in untapped shale rocks. In its first assessment of the Wolfcamp shale, the U.S. Geological Survey estimated the formation holds 20 billion undiscovered, technically recoverable barrels of oil, three times as much ...

Iran claims oil production surged month before key OPEC decision

Iran says its oil production has almost fully recovered after western powers lifted sanctions earlier this year, a development that could ease tension at OPEC’s crucial gathering this month. The Islamic Republic claimed its daily output surged nearly 300,000 barrels over two months to 3.92 million b ...

ConocoPhillips cutting costs, spending to gird against volatile prices

ConocoPhillips has cut oil production costs by a third to less than $50 a barrel over the past two years, girding itself against falling crude prices. At an analyst meeting Thursday, executives said the Houston driller plans to sell $5 billion to $8 billion in assets, buy back $3 billion in shares a ...

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