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: Energy XXI Ltd's (OTC:EXXIQ) stock popped double-digits in early morning trading before fading a bit by lunchtime. The rally was fueled by a 4% rally in the price of crude oil as it has retaken the $50 price level. Word of an agreement to cease fighting in the Ukraine helped ease concerns over demand for Russian oil resulting in a rally in the price of crude.
So what: So, basically, today's rally in Energy XXI's stock price has absolutely nothing to do with its underlying business. Sure, it will benefit from higher crude prices, if those prices are sustainable, but overall demand for oil remains weaker than expected. Worse yet, supplies have yet to come down enough to ease the current glut. This will result in the price of oil continuing to be volatile until supply and demand are balanced out, which will lead to continued volatility for Energy XXI investors.
Now what: Other than a sustainably higher oil price in the future a more meaningful fuel for Energy XXI stock would be for it to make progress on its debt issues. The company is pursuing the sale of its Grand Isle gathering system as well as other non-core assets to pay down debt. If it can quickly wrap up these sales, at a decent price, it would have a bit more breathing room on the debt, which has been a huge weight as the price of oil has fallen.