RBC Capital Markets and Economist Intelligence Unit release special
73 per cent of respondents expect an increase in the price of natural
gas of 10 per cent or more in the medium term
Low cost a positive impact on manufacturing, but not a significant
positive impact on the overall U.S. economy; competitive advantage
anticipated for U.S. and Canadian companies
NEW YORK and TORONTO, Feb. 26, 2013 /CNW/ - On the heels of record-low
natural gas prices, RBC Capital Markets and the Economist Intelligence
Unit published a report today focusing on the U.S. shale gas boom and
its implications for North American economies and businesses. The
report examines how the surge in unconventional gas production is
transforming sectors such as energy and transportation.
"We are entering a paradigm shift in the way that businesses and
national governments look at energy, particularly as it relates to
underlying market drivers, business models, risks and economic impact
stemming from the shale gas boom," said Marc Harris, RBC Capital
Markets' Co-Head of Global Research.
"The coming years will be transformative for companies, particularly
those in the energy, infrastructure, manufacturing and transportation
sectors, which will, in turn, create opportunities for both investors
and corporations," added Richard Talbot, Co-Head of Global Research,
RBC Capital Markets.
Key findings from the research include:
Most Exploration & Production (E&P) market participants believe shale
gas prices have bottomed out: The vast majority (87 per cent) of survey respondents predict natural
gas prices will stay the same or increase over the next two years. In
fact, 73 per cent of respondents anticipate a price increase of 10 per
cent or more in the next five years. Until then, E&P companies are
moving away from dry gas and are focusing instead on liquid-rich plays,
such as wet gas and shale oil.
The shale gas boom is making U.S. companies think twice: Companies in the energy, manufacturing and transportation industries
are reassessing underlying market drivers, business models and risks as
a result of the shale gas boom. On an economy-wide level, respondents
expect that shale gas will improve country competitiveness in both the
U.S. (52 per cent) and in Canada (48 per cent).
The shale gas boom is impacting industries differently - consider
manufacturing and transportation: Low cost shale gas will be especially beneficial to companies that rely
on feedstock or direct energy usage to compete on a global level. In
industries like petrochemicals and fertilizers, where feedstock or
energy inputs can account for up to 90 per cent of total production
costs, low priced shale gas will be a game changer. The impact on the
transportation industry will be more subtle; rather than a complete
transformation to gas-based usage, diversification will likely take
place across the industry.
Impact on the U.S. economy: According to more than half (54 per cent) of those surveyed in the
report, shale gas could lead to natural gas becoming a significant U.S.
export in the medium term. However, revenues generated from natural gas
exports will not necessarily have a significant positive impact on the
state of the overall U.S. economy. The implications on job creation
will be positive, but energy security and environmental concerns could
limit the scale of natural gas exports in the U.S.
Lack of transparency remains an obstacle to investment: A lack of transparency regarding chemical usage from producers is a deterrent to gas-related
investments, according to 25 per cent of institutional investors
responding to the survey. While the industry does engage in some
reporting on the topic, some of it remains incomplete or inaccurate and
presents an issue for potential and existing investors. Improved
transparency, increased environmental risk management and
implementation of best practices will help the industry maintain its
license to operate while at the same time capturing the benefit of
production currently lost to fugitive emissions.
Infrastructure will be challenged to keep up with demand dynamics: While sourcing infrastructure investment capital is unlikely to be a
major bottleneck to the growth of the gas industry, regulatory risks
remain prevalent. Regional pipeline supply dynamics are rapidly
changing in response to changing demand conditions. Notably, an
increase in NGL demand production has created an infrastructure
bottleneck in some regions, for example in North East U.S.
About the Survey
Implemented by the Economist Intelligence Unit and sponsored by RBC
Capital Markets, the report draws insight from a survey of 357 North
American C-suite executives across a variety of industries; in-depth
interviews with key experts and leading companies involved in the shale
gas boom; and desk research based on the latest data, documents and
reports from within the industry.
About RBC Capital Markets
RBC Capital Markets is the corporate and investment banking arm of RBC
and is consistently ranked among the top global investment banks. With
over 6,300 employees, RBC Capital Markets is active globally in fixed
income, foreign exchange, infrastructure finance, ECM, metals & mining
and oil & gas. Working with clients through operations in Asia,
Australia, the UK, Europe, and in every major North American city, RBC
provides capital markets products and services from 75 offices in 15
countries. RBC Capital Markets has major hubs in New York, Toronto,
London, Sydney, Hong Kong, and Tokyo. For more information, please
About the Economist Intelligence Unit
The Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) is the world's leading resource
for economic and business research, forecasting and analysis. It
provides accurate and impartial intelligence for companies, government
agencies, financial institutions and academic organisations around the
globe, inspiring business leaders to act with confidence since 1946.
EIU products include its flagship Country Reports service, providing
political and economic analysis for 195 countries, and a portfolio of
subscription-based data and forecasting services. The company also
undertakes bespoke research and analysis projects on individual markets
and business sectors.
More information is available at www.eiu.com or follow us on www.twitter.com/theeiu.
For further information:
Sanam Heidary, 212-618-5589
Gillian McArdle, 416 842-4231
Julia Ehrenfeld, 212-279-3115 x223