Rice Energy Gained while Chesapeake Energy Lost in March



March movers

In this series, we’ll discuss the top energy gainers and losers for March. During this period, crude oil fell by ~4.3% while natural gas fell by ~3.4%.

In this part of the series, we’ll discuss the best and worst performers of the upstream and integrated energy sub-sectors. We’ve selected only companies with market capitalizations of over $2 billion and 30-day average daily volumes over a million shares.

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Top gainers

Rice Energy (RICE) gained the most among its upstream peers. It gained ~11% in March. Despite a hiccup at the turn of February into March, the company’s shares have been in a clear uptrend since mid-January.

Rice Energy was followed by Laredo Petroleum (LPI), with a ~9.3% gain in March. While the company’s shares have gained ~50% year-to-date, they still lost about a quarter of their value over the last six months. Laredo Petroleum shares still trade closer to their 52-week low than to their 52-week high.

Top losers

Coming to the top upstream losers in March, Chesapeake Energy (CHK) performed the worst, with a ~15% loss for the month. While the company’s shares seemed to find a bottom in March, they’re down by about a quarter over the last six months and over a fifth year-to-date.

Another big upstream loser in March was Canadian oil and gas company Encana Corporation (ECA). Encana shares lost ~14.6% over the month and ~43% over the last six months.

In comparison, the broad market SPDR S&P 500 ETF Trust (SPY) lost barely 2%. Surprisingly, the Energy Select Sector SPDR (XLE)—tracking the US energy sector, with large integrated energy companies dominating its holdings—lost a smaller ~1.8% in March.


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