NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Shares of Anadarko Petroleum Corp. (APC) are higher by 5.90% to $78.04 in early afternoon trading on Wednesday, as the energy sector rises due to the slight gain in oil prices.
Brent crude for January delivery is higher by 4.29% to $58.33 per barrel on the NYMEX this afternoon.
The rise in oil prices is due to a smaller than expected drop in U.S. crude supplies, MarketWatch reports.
The U.S. Energy Information Administration said crude oil inventories were lower by 800,000 barrels for the week ended December 12. Analysts polled by Platts had expected a decline of 2.5 million barrels, MarketWatch added.
Additionally, the South African Nation of Mozambique issued a new law allowing groups, led by Anadarko and Eni SpA (E) , to move ahead with multi-billion dollar gas projects. The law sets legal and financial terms allowing a large portion of the revenue to be kept offshore, Bloomberg reports.
The two companies are said to be considering whether or not to develop offshore fields that Mozambique's national oil company estimates to hold 250 trillion cubic feet of gas, enough to meet world consumption for over two years, Bloomberg added.
Separately, TheStreet Ratings team rates ANADARKO PETROLEUM CORP as a Hold with a ratings score of C. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:
"We rate ANADARKO PETROLEUM CORP (APC) a HOLD. The primary factors that have impacted our rating are mixed ? some indicating strength, some showing weaknesses, with little evidence to justify the expectation of either a positive or negative performance for this stock relative to most other stocks. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures and expanding profit margins. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including disappointing return on equity and a generally disappointing performance in the stock itself."
Highlights from the analysis by TheStreet Ratings Team goes as follows:
- The revenue growth came in higher than the industry average of 6.3%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues rose by 11.6%. Growth in the company's revenue appears to have helped boost the earnings per share.
- The debt-to-equity ratio is somewhat low, currently at 0.71, and is less than that of the industry average, implying that there has been a relatively successful effort in the management of debt levels. Along with the favorable debt-to-equity ratio, the company maintains an adequate quick ratio of 1.01, which illustrates the ability to avoid short-term cash problems.
- ANADARKO PETROLEUM CORP reported significant earnings per share improvement in the most recent quarter compared to the same quarter a year ago. This company has reported somewhat volatile earnings recently. But, we feel it is poised for EPS growth in the coming year. During the past fiscal year, ANADARKO PETROLEUM CORP reported lower earnings of $1.57 versus $4.74 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($4.70 versus $1.57).
- APC has underperformed the S&P 500 Index, declining 9.98% from its price level of one year ago. Turning toward the future, the fact that the stock has come down in price over the past year should not necessarily be interpreted as a negative; it could be one of the factors that may help make the stock attractive down the road. Right now, however, we believe that it is too soon to buy.
- Return on equity has greatly decreased when compared to its ROE from the same quarter one year prior. This is a signal of major weakness within the corporation. Compared to other companies in the Oil, Gas & Consumable Fuels industry and the overall market, ANADARKO PETROLEUM CORP's return on equity significantly trails that of both the industry average and the S&P 500.
- You can view the full analysis from the report here: APC Ratings Report