Energy stocks were trending higher this afternoon, with the NYSE Energy Sector Index rising 1.3% and the SPDR Energy Select Sector ETF (XLE) up 0.8%.
The Philadelphia Oil-Service Sector index was posting a 1.1% advance and the Dow Jones US Utilities Index was slipping 1.7%.
West Texas Intermediate crude oil was rising $1.32 to $78.03 per barrel, while North Sea Brent crude also was advancing $1.63 to $85.69 per barrel. Henry Hub natural gas futures were $0.06 lower at $6.84 per 1 million BTU.
In company news, Methanex (MEOH) rose 4% after the methanol producer overnight disclosed plans for "a multi-million dollar investment" to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from its facility in New Zealand by around 50,000 tons per year. The company is expecting the project will recoup all of its costs within two years by eliminating its need to distill crude methanol.
Kinder Morgan (KMI) gained 1.3% after the energy infrastructure company Tuesday said it has completed the $565 million sale of a 25.5% equity interest in a liquified natural gas production company in Georgia to an unnamed financial buyer. The company, which is retaining a 25.5% stake in the Elba Liquefaction Co, plans to use the net proceeds from the transaction to pay down short-term debt and fund future investments, including stock buybacks, it said.
Emerson Electric (EMR) declined fractionally, slipping about 0.7% in recent trade after the electric equipment company Tuesday said it will take a $162 million charge against its Q3 financial results after announcing plans to sell its Metran manufacturing business and related assets in Russia to the local management team. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed although the company said Russia accounted for about 1.5% of its FY21 global sales.