Gazprom’s company song is probably the only example of a company in a safety-conscious industry that encourages alcohol consumption. The video is certainly impressive, with its shots of some tough-looking Siberian operations and the spectacular Moscow head office, even if the singer leaves something to be desired in the glamour stakes. It is exactly what you need to cheer you up at a time when things haven’t been going too well with one of your key suppliers. Read more
Addax Petroleum shares were up almost 14 per cent on Monday morning after the Sunday Times report at the weekend that Sinopec of China had made an indicative offer, valuing Addax at about £4.8bn.
The listed Sinopec group said it had not made a bid, but left open the possibility that its state-owned parent group might have made an approach.
The news follows the emergence of last week of the Korea National Oil Company as a possible bidder.
The possible bid or bids turn the spotlight on Jean Claude Gandur, Addax’s chief executive and president, who has a hold over almost 40 per cent of the shares.
The outcome is also likely to be tightly bound up with the politics of Iraq. Read more
For those who missed it on Saturday, John Authers combined the two topics. The commodities surge of recent weeks, he writes, could reflect a scenario similar to the cheese shop sketch; or it could reflect the dead parrot sketch. Which one depends whether the tentative signs of demand picking up reflect genuine green shoots, or simply the effect of re-stocking.
One explanation is the cheese shop scenario; that demand is drastically outstripping supply. Manufacturers across the world leapt to close off production last year, either because they expected lower demand or because the credit crunch meant that they could no longer get financing.
That would support the ‘super cycle’ theory of commodities markets, and the peak oil thesis. Read more
Commodities staged a broad retreat on Monday as a stronger dollar and cautious comments from Chinese premier Wen Jibao over the durability of economic recovery in the world’s third largest economy.
Gains seen across commodities last week also prompted analysts to question whether the rally had been over bought and a correction was due. Read more
The LA Times’ car blog says drivers are again reacting to rising gasoline prices. While the average for the state on Friday was $2.96, prices above $3 have been spotted at some gas stations, and a recent survey shows drivers are taking note:
Kelley, the Irvine-based auto information firm, surveyed new car shoppers last month about gas prices and found that more than 60% have changed their buying approach because of rising pump prices, with many saying they would make compromises in their choice of a new vehicle in order to save money on gas. Read more
Australian resources companies are being criticised for their strong warnings to government and the media on the cost of a proposed carbon reduction scheme, while making milder comments to markets on the likely material impact.
The Australian Conservation Foundation and Australian Climate Justice Project filed a complaint with the country’s competition and consumer watchdog to investigate claims by Boral, Bluescope Steel, Caltex Australia, Rio Tinto, Woodside Petroleum and Xstrata. Read more
BP close to choosing chairman
Former BHP Billiton chief executive Paul Anderson on shortlist (FT)
Qatar, Shell in talks on joint projects outside country
Gas rich state considers foreign investments (Bloomberg) Read more