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BenzingaEditorial

Oil Giants Have Contrasting Approaches to the Crisis

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oil industry stocks

The oil industry was already under pressure due to the climate crisis and increasing regulation from governments to cut emissions. Now, many are wondering if the coronavirus is the last drop that will kill the oil industry and help save the planet. Analysts say that the oil and gas industry will never be the same. Without any exaggeration, oil is facing the gravest challenge in its 100-year history. Oil giants have been pushed to ‘survival mode’ and an environment of pure carnage due to plunging demand and a destructive price war.

Unprecedented times

With some labelling the situation as “apocalyptical”, the least lurid description is “unprecedented”. Oil prices have been the lowest in almost two decades, with even worse potentially on the way. This latest cyclical oil shock is hitting an industry whose days are counted. But the world’s economy and infrastructure is still heavily invested in fossil fuels to a truly staggering level. This means oil has enormous inertia. Moreover, the aspects that made us rely on oil during last hundred plus years are still around because it is still a powerful way to produce and transport energy.

The answer of Oil Giants

Dividend Aristocrats are still betting their future on oil

Chevron Corporation (NYSE: CVX) is continuing to drill for oil. Chevron and Exxon Mobil Corporation (NYSE: XOM) are certain they can still bring in a few profitable years while their European rivals are betting their future on renewables. Chief Executive Officer Mike Wirth believes the energy business is simply undergoing another of its natural transitions. Chevron is not focused on replacing oil, but rather at making oil and gas more efficient and more environmentally benign. This isn’t surprising as it is coming from someone who profits from the status quo.

It’s a multibillion-dollar gamble that would have been less surprising before the pandemic turned the whole world upside down. The risk is that the industry’s mightiest could end up being left behind by producing a lot of climate-endangering oil and gas that no one wants or needs. Wirth insists he’s comfortable with that risk, because he finds that this energy transition is simply “misunderstood.” Exxon has also reiterated its commitment to being oil’s last man standing decades from now.

Chastened BP committed to dramatically reduce oil and gas production

In sharp contract, BP p.l.c. (NYSE: BP) announced dramatic steps to address climate change on August 4. This strategy includes an unexpected vow to reduce oil and gas production 40% over the next decade. Its CEO admitted its strategy was greatly influenced by the COVID-19 crisis.

Contrasting public approaches

So far, Chevron and Exxon’s approach to climate change is in contrast to those of BP, Royal Dutch Shell (NYSE: RDS-B) (NYSE: RDS-A) and France’s Total S.A. (NYSE: TOT). All three have committed to speed up their shift to cleaner fuel sources. The aim is to align with the Paris climate agreement and become “carbon zero” by 2050.

On the other hand, Chevron and Exxon have pledged to sustain their dividends unlike BP and Royal Dutch Shell Plc that were forced cut their highly prized dividends due to the low oil prices.

Chevron and Exxon claim to support the goals of the Paris Agreement by reducing emissions, but they haven’t committed to a zero-carbon footprint. They plan to reduce emissions from their own operations but not those of their products. Their position is also politically easier in the U.S., where fossil fuels count on significant support from the Congress. Chevron and Exxon are simply avoiding the switch to a field where they have little expertise and where they perceive returns to be lower.

Business of oil may never return to ‘normal’

Shell CEO Ben van Beurden recently suggested that the oil business might never recover. BP’s Bernard Looney didn’t rule out the possibility that post-pandemic demand has already peaked. Those are horrifying news for companies that used to thrive as providers of a scarce resource that underpins the global economy. First of all, the resource is no longer scarce because of shale. BP even lowered its forecast it made two months ago by predicting that over the upcoming decades, crude prices could trend as much as 20% lower than initially thought.

Natural gas could be the answer

Natural gas is cheap these days. Its supplies also seem larger than oil reserves. Many experts are betting on natural gas to be our largest electricity provider. It is a perfect complement to solar and wind power. This is why it also makes sense to run cars on it. EVs are cleaner but their production also has an environmental footprint so they cannot solve all our problems. Another possibility is to use coal-to-liquid processes, just like what Germany did during WWII. But, it is a dirty and expensive way to increase supply. Rest assured, oil giants will explore any opportunity to keep the business afloat.

The solution could be gradual

A key question is whether the taken action is capable to alter the course of the climate crisis. Many experts are optimistic believing that the switch to renewables will provide the atmosphere the opportunity to gradually heal. The most enthusiastic ones believe 2019 will go down in history as the peak year for carbon emissions. But there are also pessimistic opinions that the fossil fuel industry will come back from the dead and that low oil prices will slow the much-needed transition to renewables.

Outlook is uncertain

Experts, including Jeff Currie at Goldman Sachs, are certain the climate change debate will take an entirely new direction. But exactly how will that look like remains to be seen. The first question is how long is the COVID-19 crisis going to last? And no one really knows the answer. But it is certain that these challenges combined are permanently altering the oil industry.

This article is not a press release and is contributed by a verified independent journalist for IAMNewswire. It should not be construed as investment advice at any time please read the full disclosure . IAM Newswire does not hold any position in the mentioned companies. Press Releases – If you are looking for full Press release distribution contact: press@iamnewswire.com Contributors – IAM Newswire accepts pitches. If you’re interested in becoming an IAM journalist contact: contributors@iamnewswire.com

BenzingaEditorial

Big Tech Is Going Green

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Emerging Companies

The rapid adoption of digital care solutions during the pandemic is here to stay beyond this unprecedented year. Business leaders are looking beyond 2020 to use technology advancements to become better prepared for the next existential treat. As a result, tech firms are going beyond their usual aspirations as they attempt to go beyond existing practices and limitations.

The last decade has seen an exponential rise in the use of technology smart homes and energy efficiency yet this was not mirrored in healthcare. It took for COVID-19 to illustrate why this has to change as tech saved the day be enabling telehealth, telecare and telemedicine.

Technology connects people, empowers people to manage their own health and wellbeing, work better and live better by integrating our systems. Big Tech was served as our lifeboat during the lockdown. Can it save the planet is an entirely different question, but it is investing considerable effort to make it better.

Last week, Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN) named the first recipients of capital from a $2 billion venture fund called The Climate Pledge Fund which debuted in June. The goal is to develop climate friendly technologies across all industries so along with Amazon, they can together achieve “net zero” carbon emissions by 2040. This is one decade sooner than Paris Agreement’s deadline. More precisely, Amazon plans to power its facilities and operations with 100% renewable energy by 2030 as well as electrify its fleet with 100,000 electric delivery vans it ordered from Rivian.

Meanwhile, Google (NASDAQ: GOOG) announced last week that it intends to run all of its data centers and corporate campuses around the world on 100% carbon-free power by 2030.

On September 15, Facebook (NASDAQ: FB) pledged to slash greenhouse gases and purchase enough renewable energy and offsets to cancel out carbon dioxide emissions from its global operations this year.

Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL) announced in July that it intended to become carbon neutral across its entire business, manufacturing supply chain, and product life cycle by 2030.

Back in January, Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) pledged to cut its carbon emissions by 2050. This pledge includes all directly emitted carbon as well as indirect through electrical consumption. For this purpose, Microsoft is partnering with no other than BP p.l.c. (NYSE: BP) who will supply renewable energy for the tech giant as the oil giant evolves away from oil.

But, during the pandemic, there were many smaller players that played just as important roles in helping companies operate throughout the storm.

One such company is Datadog, Inc. (NASDAQ: DDOG). The monitoring cloud-based platform announced it is integrating with ServiceNow Service Graph Connector Program. Their customers will be provided an opportunity to better manage the health of their digital infrastructure and offered services. Moreover, it will equip them to better understand their overall business context.

Corporations going beyond the usual

There certainly isn’t a lack of commitments we are seeing from large corporations. The pandemic has redefined corporate imaging efforts as action needed to be taken and as soon as possible. Of course, it is also up to the government to support the digital infrastructure for technology to can truly enhance the way the world operates.

This article is not a press release and is contributed by a verified independent journalist for IAMNewswire. It should not be construed as investment advice at any time please read the full disclosure . IAM Newswire does not hold any position in the mentioned companies. Press Releases – If you are looking for full Press release distribution contact: press@iamnewswire.com Contributors – IAM Newswire accepts pitches. If you’re interested in becoming an IAM journalist contact: contributors@iamnewswire.com

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BenzingaEditorial

EVs in Two Years – An Entirely Different Landscape

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EV Update

For years, Tesla (NASDAQ: TSLA) was the only one on in the EV space. Its Battery Day will be held today and expectations are high as Tesla its developments are expected to ease competition threats. Five years ago, EV buyers in the U.S. had only three electric options: Tesla’s Model X and S, along with Nissan’s (OTC:NSANY) Leaf.

Today, there are 13 battery-electric vehicle models available in the U.S., and 25 plug-in hybrid models. The figure is even greater if we include model variations. Moreover, dozens of new models will soon have their debut. The EV space will look entirely different two years from now as disruptive start-ups take the stage and established automakers join forces to adapt to the new era.

Pickups

At least five companies have announced plans to manufacture electric pickup trucks by 2021, namely Tesla, Nikola (NASDAQ:NKLA), Atlis, Hercules and Rivian. With so many EVs coming to market, there will be many new brands and more importantly, new technologies.

Solar and electric- best of both worlds

After recently revealing a partnership with an US based EV manufacturer, Worksport (OTC: WKSP) announced this morning it has entered into a strategic partnership with another EV contender, Atlis Motor Vehicles. The aggressively priced Atlis XT truck will integrate Worksport’s revolutionary solar-powered system TerraVis that the established truck tonneau cover producer recently revealed.

Established automakers

Ford (NYSE:F) could easily score with its upcoming battery-electric Mustang Mach E crossover SUV. Not to mention its upcoming electricied version of F-150, the best-selling vehicle in the US. General Motors (NYSE: GM) has joined forces with Nikola in a $2 billion partnership.

Although Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (NYSE: FCAU) is behind its peers in the EV race, it has now been granted €800 million of financing by The European Investment Bank for manufacturing battery electric vehicles (EVs) and plug-in hybrids. With its upcoming 50/50 merger with PSA Groupe with which will create a new company called Stellantis, it set to become the world’s fourth-largest automaker.

Moreover, these automakers operate under franchise laws that were originally put in place to prevent manufacturers from opening stores that competed with dealers.

Rivian, that has been backed by both Ford and Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN), is facing a ban as Michigan auto dealers are trying to block startup electric carmakers from copying Tesla in selling and servicing consumers directly. The bill introduced in the Michigan legislature last week would block any manufacturer other than Tesla from selling cars without a dealer as an intermediary as well as from owning and operating service and repair facilities.

The 11-year-old company has raised about $6 billion for its production of R1T pickup and R1S SUV but Some of the up-and-coming EV pickup makers, have never manufactured a vehicle before. Design flaws, manufacturing challenges, or technological failures could wreck their finances and reputations before their vehicles even get off the ground.

The electric vehicle landscape is changing rapidly. There could be spectacular success but also spectacular failures. These new developments could level up the entire industry to unforeseen highs. Moreover, these advancements could be to the benefit or detriment of Tesla. Its Battery Day should reveal how strong is its tech-savvy fortress. One thing is certain, we’re entering a new era of competition in the EV space.

This article is not a press release and is contributed by a verified independent journalist for IAMNewswire. It should not be construed as investment advice at any time please read the full disclosure . IAM Newswire does not hold any position in the mentioned companies. Press Releases – If you are looking for full Press release distribution contact: press@iamnewswire.com Contributors – IAM Newswire accepts pitches. If you’re interested in becoming an IAM journalist contact: contributors@iamnewswire.com

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BenzingaEditorial

This Week’s Earnings Repertoire

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Stock Market

Last week, the S&P 500 index fell 1.6% in the week’s run while NASDAQ and Dow Jones Industrial Average were dragged by the continued weakness in Big Tech. With indications slow economic recovery filled with uncertainties, the Federal Reserve also announced it will not raise interest rates for another three to four years. But despite a light earnings calendar, Adobe Inc (NASDAQ: ADBE) and FedEx Corporation (NYSE: FDX) made our whole week with their blockbuster results that blew estimates. This week, there will be more events on our earnings calendar to keep an eye on.

September 22

Sportswear giant Nike (NYSE: NKE) has some big questions to answer as it is expected to show progress toward returning to growth. But it will be operating in a much more price-sensitive environment this holiday season. Fortunately, the sportswear giant’s supply chain is among the most efficient ones in the industry and it does focus on consumers who are willing to pay a premium.

Canadian pot producer Aurora Cannabis Inc (NYSE: ACB) was a favorite among pot investors because of its bold expansion strategy. But that was before it lost steam in 2019 as its shares fell 56% last year, whereas the overall industry declined 36% due to headwinds. Management’s rash decisions such as acquisitions contributed to the effect of external headwinds, but marijuana sales have been increasing during this unprecedented year. The company has been seeing revenue growth during 2020, but not enough to turn a profit. Therefore, cost reduction efforts and growth strategy will be at the center of the conversation.

Stitch Fix Inc (NASDAQ: SFIX) seemed to have lost the pandemic- induced retail boom as its last earnings report included slumping profitability and weak user growth. Investors are waiting to see if the company managed to return to an offensive growth position.

AutoZone (NYSE: AZO) has had stellar performance over the past few years as the company has continued to grow without harming its financial position. But home office trend that reduces commuting is an existential threat to automotive parts.

Tesla (NASDAQ: TSLA) will have its shareholder meeting and beyond hyped Battery Day. To put it simply, what Tesla comes out with can greatly ease the threat of its uprising competitors.

September 23

Jinko Solar Holdings (NYSE: JKS) is a key player in the booming Chinese solar market which gives the company tremendous long-term upside.

The once-dominant smartphone maker BlackBerry Limited (NYSE: BB) is back with a new phone scheduled for 2021. Its earnings report is expected to show solid grounds on which it can deliver this comeback, but for some BB never left. It has to deliver as its competitors continue to shine with impressive results.

September 24

Drugstore chain Rite Aid (NYSE: RAD) will release its second quarter results for the quarter that ended on August 29. With its last report, the drugstore retailer delivered an earnings beat of 92.6%. Growth was achieved by keeping stores open and enhancing the digital infrastructure so its stock could  be poised for an earnings beat.

Wall Street expected Costco Wholesale Corporation (NASDAQ: COST) to deliver strong results as the warehouse retailer benefited from sharp sales growth that has been boosted by online sales.

Takeaway

That’s all folks. If anything, there will be more things happening, but we simply have to get adjusted to the fact that uncertainty is our new normal for the time being. Meanwhile, all eyes will be on Tesla and whether it will succeed in delivering yet another revolutionary discovery on its beyond anticipated Battery Day.

This article is not a press release and is contributed by a verified independent journalist for IAMNewswire. It should not be construed as investment advice at any time please read the full disclosure . IAM Newswire does not hold any position in the mentioned companies. Press Releases – If you are looking for full Press release distribution contact: press@iamnewswire.com Contributors – IAM Newswire accepts pitches. If you’re interested in becoming an IAM journalist contact: contributors@iamnewswire.com

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