O&G stocks active on rising oil prices

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KUALA LUMPUR (May 14): Shares in major oil and gas (O&G) counters on the local bourse such as Sapura Energy Bhd, Hibiscus Petroleum Bhd, UMW Oil & Gas Corp Bhd, Sumatec Resources Bhd, were actively traded and posted gains, in line with rising crude oil prices.

Sapura Energy was the most actively traded O&G stock on the local bourse today, with 43.58 million shares traded, equivalent to 7.28% of its share capital. This morning, Sapura Energy surged by as high as 35.82% or 24 sen to 91 sen, from its previous close of 67 sen.

At noon-break, the counter pared down its gain and paused at 87.5 sen, for a market capitalisation of RM5.27 billion.

Meanwhile, Sumatec was the second O&G counter that was most actively traded on Bursa Malaysia, with 125.92 million shares, followed by UMW O&G (125.92 million shares) and Hibiscus (97.46 million shares).

As for gainers, two Negeri Sembilan-located oil refiners were in the top 10 spots: Petron Malaysia Refining & Marketing Bhd and Hengyuan Refining Bhd.

According to UOB Kay Hian Securities (M) Sdn Bhd, O&G counters will track more closely to factors that include oil price new highs on continued drawdown of inventories, Trump reinstating Iran sanctions in the next two to three months, and the next move by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) on June 18.

Meanwhile, CIMB Investment Bank Bhd noted that Brent crude oil prices have rallied 15% to US$77 per barrel year-to-date, and reckoned “higher oil prices are likely for the foreseeable future.”

CIMB said factors that could drive up the crude oil price include the decent growth in global oil demand, slower-than-expected global oil supply growth due to OPEC discipline and involuntary production declines at Venezuela and Mexico, a likely acceleration of the pace of global oil inventory destocking in the second half of 2018, bottlenecks in US shale oil production growth until the third quarter of 2019 and the likely reimposition of sanctions on Iran.

At 12pm, Brent crude oil were trading at US$76.73 per barrel. It has steadily risen from around US$45 per barrel since June last year.