Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over market movements, we do like to keep an eye on big changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.

What: Shares of oil-field-services specialist RPC (NYSE: RES) spouted gains as large as 11.1% today on modest trading volume.

So what: Oil prices are soaring today while the dollar is getting weaker versus other major world currencies, and that's a terrific combo for American oil businesses. Moreover, extraction giant ConocoPhillips (NYSE: COP) just got the go-ahead to start a major drilling operation in Alaska and RPC specializes in all-American projects.

Now what: Hometown rivals Basic Energy Services (NYSE: BAS) and Pioneer Drilling (NYSE: PDC) are enjoying similar gains today for much the same reasons. If you're trying to choose an oil-field investment in that bunch, consider that RPC pays a healthy dividend while the other two do not. Check out a handful of other dividend ideas, courtesy of Fool analysts.

Interested in more info about RPC? Click here to add it to My Watchlist.

This article represents the opinion of the writer, who may disagree with the “official” recommendation position of a Motley Fool premium advisory service. We’re motley! Questioning an investing thesis -- even one of our own -- helps us all think critically about investing and make decisions that help us become smarter, happier, and richer.