Saturday, August 09, 2008

Weekend Beach Reading: August 11, 2008

ENSCO Int’l (ESV-$64.01) reported another record quarter with net income up 17 percent year-on-year to $297 million, reflecting higher day rates and improved utilization. With the planned expansion of its active deepwater rig fleet commencing in 2009, management believes that its deepwater assets will contribute 30 percent of total revenue by 2012.

First Solar (FSLR-$257.87) reported net income year-over-year rose 57 percent to $69.7 million, as higher-than-expected production from a new plant in Kulim, Malaysia and yield and efficiency improvements helped it meet surging demand. The company, which currently sells most of its modules to European customers,
is looking to establish a foothold in the United States.

Even though revenue rose almost 32 percent in the second-quarter ended June 30 to $22.2 billion, Marathon Oil (MRO-$45.99) said its net income declined 50 percent to $774 million, or $1.08 a share, hurt by lower refining and marketing margins. Management
is considering a plan to split the company into two independent companies, one focused on upstream activities, such as exploration and production, and the other dedicated to refining and marketing.

Ocean Power Technologies (OPTT-$8.85)
is struggling to gain commercial acceptance for its proprietary PowerBuoy wave generation system, which extracts the natural energy in ocean waves, converting it into usable electrical power for utility-scale grid-connected applications. Can anyone get the chief executive to admit that demonstrating proof-of-concept differs from commercial acceptance?

Quicksilver Resources (KWK-$25.20)
is demonstrating the success to be found via the drill bit on the Barnett Shale Formation near Fort Worth, Texas. Production volumes of natural gas and natural gas liquids in Barnett Basin grew by 120 percent for the second quarter.

Editor David J Phillips does not hold a financial interest in any stocks mentioned in this article. The 10Q Detective has a Full Disclosure Policy.

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