Energy stocks were ending lower this afternoon, with the NYSE Energy Sector Index falling 2% while the SPDR Energy Select Sector ETF (XLE) was down 3%. The Philadelphia Oil-Service Sector index was retreating 1.5% and the Dow Jones US Utilities Index was slipping 0.1% in late trade.
West Texas Intermediate crude oil was $1.98 lower at $109.78 per barrel, giving back a morning advance after the Energy Information Administration reported a decline of 2.8 million barrels in commercial inventories during the seven days ended June 24 compared with market expectations anticipating a 950,000-barrel draw.
Brent crude was dropping $2.27 to $109.49 per barrel while Henry Hub natural gas futures fell $0.07 to $6.50 per 1 million BTU.
In company news, SunPower (SPWR) plunged almost 11% after Wells Fargo began coverage of the solar-technologies company with an underweight stock rating and a $17 price target.
Exxon Mobil (XOM) fell 3.8% after the energy major overnight announced the sale of its XTO Energy Canada joint venture with Imperial Oil (IMO) to Whitecap Resources (WCP.TO) for around $1.47 billion in cash. The deal includes 567,000 net acres in the Montney siltstone play in northern British Columbia and Alberta as well as 72,000 net acres in the Duvernay shale. Imperial shares also were 3.5% lower.
Baker Hughes (BKR) turned 1.6% lower, reversing an early 1.5% advance that followed Tellurian (TELL) saying it selected the oilfield-services firm to supply four 19-megawatt compressors for the initial phase of its Driftwood natural gas pipeline project in Louisiana. The $240 million contract also calls on Baker Hughes to provide a LM6000PF+ gas turbine and other turbomachinery equipment. Tellurian shares were sliding 7% this afternoon.
To the upside, Superior Drilling Products (SDPI) climbed 2% after Wednesday saying its Hard Rock Solutions unit has struck a deal with Bin Zayed Petroleum for Investment to become the exclusive distributor for its Drill-N-Ream wellbore conditioning system in the Middle East and northern Africa.