A few months ago, I urged readers to weigh natural gas company CEOs' public comments on 2010 versus their actions. Before the year closes, I would like to reiterate that point.
Last time, I pointed to XTO Energy's
Exxon's excitement about natural gas is long term in nature. See, for example, the company's energy outlook to 2030. It predicts "natural gas will be the fastest growing major fuel," with demand 55% higher in 2030 than it was in 2005.
Granted, Simpson gets shares of Exxon in this all-stock transaction, so he keeps exposure to natural gas, but Exxon's portfolio is far more balanced with oil production. That's a quick way to achieve the hydrocarbon balance that EOG Resources
I would expect a move in natural gas prices to, say, the $7 level to translate to a much greater than 25% rise in XTO's market value. How credible can Chesapeake Energy's
I was also interested to see Floyd Wilson, the chairman and CEO of Petrohawk Energy
I realize that Wilson is older than 60 and has a good reason to begin making retirement resolutions. If all insider sales signaled a lack of conviction, I certainly couldn't have recommended ATP Oil & Gas
The timing of Wilson's initiation of a trading plan relative to fellow shale-slayer Simpson's big sale admittedly makes the move look more significant than it otherwise would. I recognize that both actions may be meaningless with regard to the near-term natural gas outlook, but I'm nevertheless keeping them in the back of my mind.
Fool contributor Toby Shute doesn't have a position in any company mentioned. Check out his CAPS profile or follow his articles using Twitter or RSS. Chesapeake Energy is an Inside Value pick. The Motley Fool owns shares of Chesapeake Energy and XTO, and has a disclosure policy.