For the week ended September 1, 2017, Marathon Oil (MRO) stock rose ~2.0%, from $11.05 to $11.27. The stock is making a pattern of lower highs and lower lows in fiscal 2017. Last week, even though MRO stock started the week on a lower note, it managed to rise on Thursday and Friday, which helped the stock close the week on a positive note.
On a weekly basis, MRO stock is trading below its 50-week and 200-week moving averages. On September 1, 2017, MRO stock closed at $11.27, whereas its 50-week and 200-week moving averages were $14.66 and $21.62, respectively. Currently, MRO stock is ~23.0% below its 50-week moving average.
Crude oil and natural gas prices
For the week ended September 1, 2017, crude oil (USO) prices retreated from $47.87 per barrel to $47.29 per barrel, a fall of more than one percentage point. Currently, crude oil is trading slightly below its 200-day moving average, which is $49.55. On Friday, September 1, 2017, crude oil regained its 50-day moving average. As of that same date, the 50-day moving average was $47.07. Natural gas (UNG) prices rose ~5.0% last week, rising from $2.92 per MMBtu (million British thermal unit) to $3.07 per MMBtu.
Marathon Oil primarily operates in US resource plays such as the Oklahoma Basin and at international locations. MRO’s peers ConocoPhillips (COP), Devon Energy (DVN), and Diamondback Energy (FANG), which operate in US resource plays, rose 2.0%, 3.0%, and 4.0%, respectively, last week. Like MRO, Devon Energy has operations in the Oklahoma resource basin. ConocoPhillips and Diamondback Energy are active in the Permian Basin.
In general, for the week ended September 1, 2017, crude oil (USO) and natural gas (UNG) exploration and production companies (XOP) have outperformed the SPDR S&P 500 ETF (SPY). SPY rose 1.3%, and XOP rose nearly 3.0%. According to the SPDR S&P 500 ETF Trust prospectus, “The Trust seeks to provide investment results that, before expenses, correspond generally to the price and yield performance of the S&P 500 Index.”
In the next part, we’ll take a look at MRO’s implied volatility.