Spanish oil company Repsol lost a huge chunk of its proven reserves in a dispute with Argentina over YPF, a South American subsidiary. And Repsol suffered another blow earlier this year when it was forced to shut down operations in Libya due to unrest in that company. But a settlement with Buenos Aires put billions of dollars in Repsol's coffers and it is now looking for targets in the U.S., Canada and Norway. The problem is that there are few quality businesses available and the ones that are will not be cheap. In fact, Repsol has already lost one bidding war in Norway. But the company is still showing strong growth, so it can afford to wait for the best opportunity.

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