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Who Won the Debate? Fracking, Drilling and Mining

18 October 2012 in Trading Ideas

Missing among the many subjects touched on during last Tuesday’s feistier presidential debate was any discussion of “climate change” – or any thoughts by either candidate on what to do about it.

To the contrary, as left-leaning journalist Kevin Drum suggested on Mother Jones’ website on Wednesday, both candidates appeared to be far more interested in declaring their support of coal, drilling for oil on federal land, and “fracking” – the nickname of hydraulic fracturing, the process of breaking rock with pressurized liquid to boost oil and natural gas exploration yields.

As his evidence, he cites sections of the transcript from the debate, as condensed by the Washington Post:

OBAMA: Natural gas production is the highest it’s been in decades. We have seen increases in coal production and coal employment.

ROMNEY: Oil production is down 14 percent this year on federal land, and gas production was down 9 percent….What we don’t need is to have the president keeping us from taking advantage of oil, coal and gas….We’re going to bring that pipeline in from Canada.  

OBAMA: We’re actually drilling more on public lands than in the previous administration….And natural gas isn’t just appearing magically. We’re encouraging it and working with the industry….Oil production is up, natural gas production is up.

However, some caveats for those investing in energy stocks:  One wouldn’t necessarily want to make investment decisions solely on the political posturing by presidential candidates, just as one wouldn’t want to ignore either stock- or specific-factors or global forecasts on the economy and energy demand.

On the other hand, investors already bullish on energy stocks probably liked what they heard during last Tuesday’s debate.

The Shale Gas motif is up 3.1% in the past month, compared with an 0.1%% decline for the S&P 500.

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