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Investment Giants Urge Texas to End Most Natural Gas Flaring – Yahoo Canada Finance

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Investment Giants Urge Texas to End Most Natural Gas Flaring

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(Bloomberg) — Investors managing more than $2 trillion are calling on Texas regulators to ban the routine burning of natural gas from shale fields, arguing that the energy industry hasn’t moved quickly enough to curb the controversial practice.

AllianceBernstein, California State Teachers’ Retirement System and Legal & General Investment Management said they support eliminating gas flaring by 2025, according to a letter to the Texas Railroad Commission, which oversees oil and gas in the state. All three investors have been vocal on environmental issues before, but it’s the first time large institutional investors have taken such a public stance to the Texas regulator.

“Actions of leading operators demonstrate the financial and technical viability of ending routine flaring,” the fund managers said in the letter, which was seen by Bloomberg. “It is clear, however, that voluntary actions alone have been insufficient to eliminate routine flaring industry-wide.”

Investors and environmentalists are increasingly drawing attention to flaring because of its wastefulness and contribution to climate change. Flaring is utilized around the world as a way to deal with gas that producers can’t — or don’t want to — transport or store. Much of what’s burned, especially in the shale fields of Texas, is so-called associated gas coming from oil wells.

The sheer abundance of gas in the Permian Basin of West Texas and New Mexico means local prices for the fossil fuel are often so low that it’s cheaper for shale operators to burn it rather than pay for pipeline connections and storage. Last year the Permian flared enough gas to supply 5 million U.S. homes, according to Oslo-based Rystad Energy.

Related: Permian’s Gas-Flaring Is Much Worse Than Previously Thought

The Texas Railroad Commission has come under attack for allowing companies to effectively flare at will over the past decade as shale production boomed and helped make the U.S. the world’s top oil producer. The commission allows companies to flare during the start-up of wells and during emergencies. It also issues waivers that can be utilized right through the early and most productive phase of a shale well’s operation.

After more than a year of public pressure, the commission recently proposed requiring operators to provide information on why they need to flare, but it set no targets and resisted calls for an outright ban. Lower oil production due to the Covid-19 pandemic has meant flaring rates have dropped significantly this year, the commission said in a statement last month.

“Strong and effective regulatory action — beyond initial steps to improve data gathering and transparency — is essential to build stakeholder confidence and solve this challenge across industry,” the investors said in the letter, which is part of the commission’s public consultation.

A spokesman for the Railroad Commission didn’t return a request for comment.

LGIM, the U.K.’s biggest asset manager, supports the role of gas in the transition to cleaner energy sources but the industry “must get hold of its emissions challenges,” said John Hoeppner, head of the firm’s U.S. stewardship and sustainable investment unit.

The Railroad Commission had a “hands-off policy” on flaring for too long, he said. The letter aims to establish a common goal that companies, regulators and investors can rally around and help solve the problem, Hoeppner said. In May, LGIM said it would oppose the re-election of Darren Woods as Exxon Mobil Corp. chairman over what it called a lack of ambition on tackling climate change.

LGIM has about $1.6 trillion of assets under management. AllianceBernstein oversees roughly $600 billion and CalSTRS manages more than $200 billion.

(Updates with LGIM comment in third-last paragraph.)

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Ontario Investing $8.7 Million to Expand Quinte Health Care Network – Government of Ontario News

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Ontario Newsroom | Salle de presse de l’Ontario

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Car Insurance for Canadian

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Car insurance is vital, like snow days and maple syrup. Part of the Canadian experience. Not all countries need insurance policies by regulation as Canada does; the concept of a pay-as-you-go fuel tax has also been used as a substitute for traditional auto insurance in some areas. But, no matter how important it is, investing in the service is never the wrong decision. Insurance will save motorists from the economic burden of the ultimate inevitability of the road: accidents. They’re going to happen to everybody, no matter their experience or ability. Driving, like every other aspect of human life, is naturally a human mistake.

Also, the most experienced driver can be distracted in our current driving climate. With a reputable insurer, financial stability is only one thing to think about. Between the radio, the billboards, and the careless children thrashing around in the back seat, a few minutes on the road will provide more means of diverting someone’s attention than a few hours in front of the TV. All it takes is a misconstrued stop on a slippery day or a neglected shoulder search to cause thousands of dollars of harm to your property or the property of others. If the accident’s cost exceeds the price of the vehicle that caused it, auto insurance will save the driver from financial ruin. The protection in an appropriate strategy protects drivers in ways that the airbag has never been able to do.

The security provided by insurance is so vital that it has been obligatory for any Canadian who hopes to get behind the wheel. However, some jurisdictions offer consumers a preference as to who is protected by their auto insurance. Coverage is always mandatory, but the strategy is malleable. The right of motorists to monitor their plans and coverage does not end with the business either. Car insurance premiums are affected by a variety of factors. While some of these items are beyond the control of motorists, such as age and gender, they can still make many choices to lower their prices. Choosing a reliable vehicle, traveling shorter distances, and having fewer tickets are items drivers can do to keep their car insurance premiums as low as possible.

Some drivers, particularly new ones, are wary of individualized rates – paying different amounts for other people. Insurance firms, though, are not swindlers or profit-seekers. They’re just trying to keep auto insurance prices as reasonable as possible. A car that leaves the garage twice a week is less likely to have an accident than a car that goes twice a day. Station wagons are more comfortable to fix than imported sports cars. Every person has different driving habits, so it only makes sense to have a foreign car insurance policy. Acquiring a car insurance policy is more than just making a deal; it is the start of a friendship that will help the driver out in the toughest of times.

Some provinces in Canada, where motorists have too many car insurance options, any additional information could save the insured motorist thousands of dollars. It pays to be updated. The right strategy will keep you safe when anything else doesn’t matter where you’re in Canada.

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When it comes to investing, don't believe everything you see on TV – TheChronicleHerald.ca

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Interest in investing is hitting new highs. Discount brokers are flooded with applications and trading volumes are surging. Despite this renewed focus, some misunderstandings persist about the realities of investing.

To illustrate, let’s deconstruct an investment conversation that you might have with a friend, colleague, or advisor. It goes like this.

“A guy on TV says the economy is strong and stocks are going up. It seems like a good time to invest. I don’t see much downside so I’m buying high-dividend stocks for my RRSP.”


A guy on TV

Many investors think there are people who know where the market is going. Experts who know something the rest of us don’t. The reality is, they don’t. Their insights may be interesting and unique, but any conclusions related to market timing aren’t worth the cup of coffee you’re drinking. It’s impossible to call the market level a week, month or even year from now with enough consistency to be useful. Stock prices are determined by a myriad of factors, many of which we’re unaware of until after they’ve emerged.


The economy looks good. I’m buying.

At the core of most market calls is an economic forecast. This is unfortunate because the connection between what the economy is doing and where the stock market is going is flimsy at best. It’s true that economic activity affects corporate profits, which ultimately drive stock prices, but the relationship is sloppy and unpredictable. Consider the last decade — we had the slowest economic recovery in history and yet profit margins were at or near record levels throughout, as were stock prices.

It bears repeating. Mr. Market is not paying attention to today’s economic headlines. He’s focusing on what the news might be in 12 to 18 months. The corporations you’re investing in aren’t reading the headlines either. They’re too busy trying to move their businesses ahead.


A good time to invest

For an investor with a multi-decade time frame, anytime is a good time. Some points in time, however, will be more prospective than others. These are periods when returns are projected to be higher based on fundamentals like rising profitability, low valuations and/or extremely negative investor sentiment. To be clear, these factors won’t tell you what’s about to happen, but will provide a tailwind over the next three to five years.


Not much downside

When you own a stock, the range of possible outcomes is always wider than you expect. It’s hard to conceive of a holding going down 20, 30 or 40 per cent, especially when things are going well. Unfortunately, recent price moves have no predictive value, they just provide false comfort.

The future for a stock that has recently done well is just as uncertain as one that hasn’t. Indeed, it may be riskier because its price-to-earnings multiple is higher (if profits haven’t kept up with the stock price), its dividend yield is lower and shareholders’ risk aversion, a necessary ingredient for good returns, has melted into complacency.


The higher the better

We all love dividends, but too many investors choose stocks based solely on yield. This is a problem because yield is not a measure of value for a stock like it is for a bond. A company’s worth is derived from it’s potential to earn profits into the future. Dividends are simply the portion of those earnings that get distributed to shareholders.

Yield-obsessed investors often downplay the importance of the stocks’ second source of return — price appreciation. Ask yourself the question: What would you rather have, a $10 stock yielding five per cent that’s worth $8, or a $10 stock with a three per cent yield that’s worth $12?

If you want to focus on dividend income, start with a list of stocks that have an acceptable yield. From there build a diversified portfolio of holdings that are trading at or below what they’re worth.


In your RRSP?

When asked, “What should I do in my RRSP (or TFSA),” I have only one answer. The most important thing driving your RRSP strategy is the strategy you’re pursuing for your overall portfolio (including other registered accounts, taxable accounts, pensions and income properties). Anything you do in your RRSP has to roll up into your household asset mix. In that vein, RRSP contributions are a wonderful tool for adjusting your overall portfolio because transactions have no tax consequences.

Investing is hard enough without basing decisions on false premises. If you find yourself listening to someone pontificate about where the market is going, try to change the subject or look for an escape.


Tom Bradley is


chair and chief investment officer


at Steadyhand Investment Funds, a company that offers individual investors low-fee investment funds and clear-cut advice. He can be reached at

tbradley@steadyhand.com

.

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