NEW YORK, NY -- (Marketwire) -- 06/20/12 -- Oil stocks have struggled over the last month amongst concerns of a potential recession in Europe. The SPDR S&P Oil & Gas Equipment & Services ETF (XES) has fallen over 22 percent in the last three months. As Europe accounts for approximately 20 percent of the world's consumption of oil, a weak economy would weigh heavily on oil demand. Five Star Equities examines the outlook for companies in the Oil & Gas Drilling & Exploration Industry and provides equity research on Hercules Offshore, Inc. (NASDAQ: HERO) and Seadrill Ltd. (NYSE: SDRL).
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Oil prices Monday fell close to $83 a barrel as results of the recent Greek elections failed to ease concerns of Europe's growing debt crisis. "Given that the (Greek) government will likely push for an easing of austerity measures... the outlook for Greece remains far from certain, particularly as the debt crisis is spilling over into Spain and potentially Italy," said analysts at JBC Energy in Vienna.
The Energy Department's Energy Information Administration in its weekly report showed that U.S. crude supplies dropped by 200,000 barrels. According to Platts analysts had predicted a drop of 2 million barrels for the week ended June 8.
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Hercules Offshore is a leading provider of offshore contract drilling, liftboat and inland barge services with operations spanning the globe. According to a recent Forbes article Hercules Offshore Inc.'s Director Thomas R. Bates Jr. purchased 40,000 shares at an average cost of $3.42 per share. Shares of the company on Monday fell 9 percent to close at $3.14.
Seadrill is a leading offshore deep-water drilling company. The company is currently in advanced discussions regarding a new five-year contract for the drillship West Polaris. The potential contract revenue for the five-year period is approximately US$1.16 billion. A final agreement is expected within July 2012.
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