Energy Sector Update for 09/25/2017: BRS,XOM,RDS.a,RDS.B,NE,RDC,DO,RIG,ESV,BHGE

Top Energy Stocks

XOM +1.11%

CVX +0.75%

COP +1.59%

SLB +1.39%

OXY +2.64%

Energy stocks were following crude oil to large gains, with the NYSE Energy Sector Index climbing just under 1.2% while shares of energy companies in the S&P 500 were up nearly 1.5% as a group. Crude oil for November delivery was up $1.12 at $51.78 per barrel while October natural gas futures were 4 cents lower at $2.98 per 1 million BTU.

In company news, shares of the Bristow Group ( BRS ) were higher Monday, at one point rising almost 8% today to a session high of $10.06 apiece, after the company providing helicopter transportation to and from offshore oil platforms today said two of its directors plan to step down from the company’s board next March and will be replaced by a single new member.

Bruce Stover and David Gompert will leave the Bristow board after eight years and three years, respectively. Stover has been chairman of the board’s compensation committee during the past four years while Gompert has served on the governance and nomination committee as well as the board’s compensation committee.

In their place, Gaurdie Banister Jr. was selected to join the Bristow board on Oct. 1. Banister had been the chief executive of Aera Energy LLC, an exploration and production company jointly owned by Shell (RDS.A,RDS.B) and ExxonMobil ( XOM ), prior to his July 2015 retirement. Before leading Aera, he had worked at Shell in several executive capacities, and currently is a board member at Marathon Oil ( MRO ) and Tyson Foods ( TSN ).

Following Stover’s and Gompert’s upcoming departures next year, the Bristow board will drop in size from 11 members to 10 members overall. The company also said it was reducing board compensation by 10% from current levels, effective Oct. 1.

In other sector news,

(+) NE, (+9.2%) Analysts at UBS boost investor recommedation to Buy from Neutral, also increasing their price target for the company’s stock by $2 – or 50% – to $6 a share. UBS also upgrades Rowan Cos ( RDC ), Diamond Offshore (DO), Transocean (RIG) and Ensco (ESV) to Buy from Neutral.

(+) BHGE, (+2.5%) Bank of America Merrill Lynch begins analyst coverage with an Underperform investment rating and a $36 price target.

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