Money In the United States, a shale gas giant is collapsing

21:26  29 june  2020
21:26  29 june  2020 Source:   ouest-france.fr

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L’entreprise Chesapeake, basée à Oklahoma City, est pionnière dans l’extraction de gaz de schiste. © Brett Carlsen, Reuters Oklahoma City-based Chesapeake is a pioneer in shale gas extraction.

Chesapeake, the pioneer company in gas and oil extracted by hydraulic fracturing, is bankrupt. A new victim of the oil market, weakened by the price war launched by Saudi Arabia and Russia, and the Covid-19 crisis.

The gas and shale oil sector continues its descent into hell. On Sunday June 28, the company Chesapeake, the second largest producer of gas in the United States , filed for bankruptcy. Founded in 1989, the company is the pioneer of hydraulic fracturing, a technique that bombards water under high pressure to extract gas or oil trapped in rock. Very expensive, and damaging for the environment, hydraulic fracturing has never really been profitable, born at a time when renewable energies were arriving.

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Between April and the end of June, the Chesapeake share price fell 93% from $ 172 to $ 11.85. The company was unable to repay a debt of 12 billion euros. Declared bankrupt, she seeks justice from Texas for a restructuring agreement to try to erase 6.2 billion euros of debt. Chesapeake - about 2,000 workers - also pays for its stubbornness in extracting shale gas, while oil has proven to be more profitable.

Oil price plunges

The time to take the turn, it is the oil which was gone. The price of a barrel has plummeted since Russia and Saudi Arabia opened the floodgates, precisely to weaken the United States, which had once again become the world's largest producer, thanks to hydraulic fracturing.

Moscow and Ryad calmed down, but in April, the price of a barrel of oil nevertheless plunged into the negative (- € 37); unheard of, because of the shutdown of the world's economies, linked to the Covid-19. Eighteen companies in the industry have gone bankrupt since the start of the year.

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