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Exxon, Pemex in Research Agreement

Zacks Equity Research

Oil giant, Exxon Mobil Corporation (XOM) signed a five-year technical agreement with the exploration and production arm of Mexico’s state-controlled oil giant Petróleos Mexicanos or Pemex.

The two companies would collaborate in research, science, technology and human-resources training for the exploration, drilling, production, transportation and storage of hydrocarbons. The agreement does not involve paid services.

Exxon Mobil is the world’s largest publicly traded oil company, engaged in oil and natural gas exploration and production, petroleum products refining and marketing, chemicals manufacture, and other energy-related businesses. Approximately 83% of Exxon Mobil’s earnings come from its operations outside the U.S.

Exxon Mobil is one of the world’s best-run integrated oil company given its track record of superior returns on capital employed. Exxon Mobil has long been a core holding for investors seeking a defensive name with continued dividend growth. Exxon Mobil is fairly active in its investment program. The company plans to spend about $185 billion over the next five years, up 29% from the last five-year period.

The capital expenditure covers as many as 21 important oil and gas projects currently under the anvil and are estimated to accumulate over 1 million net oil-equivalent barrels per day by 2016. It includes the Kearl Oil Sands development project in Canada, four in West Africa and Kashagan Phase 1 in Kazakhstan. Exxon is also engaged in a large liquefied natural gas project in Papua New Guinea, which is expected to begin deliveries in 2014. It will further unearth more oil from the development of Hebron oil field offshore the Canadian province of Newfoundland and Labrador. The development will help in recovering over 700 million barrels of oil and the platform is expected to yield its first oil towards the end of 2017.

Exxon Mobil holds a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). However, the Zacks Ranked #2 stocks of Stone Energy Corporation (SGY), Chesapeake Energy Corporation (CHK), and EPL Oil & Gas, Inc. (EPL) are expected to outperform the market over the next few months.

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