but i have other ng stocks that were down in the morning or early afternoon yet came back for slight loss or good gain. so i could not bring myself to attribute br's weakness to earnings. in feb. 2000, i waited to buy br gtc at 30 only to watch in amazement when it headed down to about 25. glad i did not sell. got rid of it at 43.5 that time. this feels similar except for the torture of this two month grind (i have been buying all the way down to 36) that has frustrated anyone who is either long or short br. br management has had ample meetings in june to alert analysts if there were any problems with earnings. br has not been spending its money unless it has been buying br stock. my sense (take a look at the simmons reports or some of the br management pitches for analysts) for the past year is that br is trying to look good to wall street and to possible buy-out suitors by greatly improving earnings and cash flow and paying down debt(they don't spend too much on drilling and don't seem to know where to drill or how to drill -- maybe they could snag a great drilling director). if they miss and have not warned earlier in july, they should take the pipe. i don't think they are going to miss, and based on my own calculations of br's historic operating costs, br publically available hedge information, lack of any news or rumors of ng delivery problems, and price of open market ng last quarter, br should crush the $0.44 or is it $0.46/0.47 estimates. (ya' know xom is also down but the word is out that xom is going to kill earnings estimates. note the big august 1 analyst meeting xom has called after earnings are out in late july. this meeting should tell analysts what xom is going to do with its new bags of money not to apologize for missing the xom numbers.) so if br does not make the earnings numbers, the stock is so far down it probably won't move, but some suitors might be tempted to sniff. my own calculations say some of the the oil analysts probably did not want to be oil analysts, but that was the only job open.