A Texas rancher wins a $4.2 million judgment for natural gas royalties case.
Related: Chesapeake Before Texas Supreme Court
The 49th State District Court agreed that Anadarko failed to pay the appropriate royalties on natural gas leases to Betsy Mecom, a rancher from Zapata County. The court also awarded an additional $1.4 million in interest, $480,000 in attorney’s fees and more than $5,900 in court costs.
The monies were for more than 100 wells located on land they owned along the Rio Grande River and in South Texas. Anadarko will now have to pay the $2.3 million in damages and attorney’s fees.
Disputes between mineral owners and producers are commonplace and legal battles like this one can drag on for years. To prevent any more delays, the judge ordered that the judgement would accrue 5 percent interest for each year that it is unpaid.
Texas has a provision that allows mineral owners to request an audit if they have a dispute with an operators, which might involve royalty payment discrepancies, lease issues, drilling provisions or surface obligations. During an audit, production information, check stubs and other Owners have a four year time limit (from the time of infraction) to request an audit.
As August draws to a close, some investors are wondering what hit them. The up-and-down motion of crude oil prices and the recent trend in the stock market are enough to make even seasoned investors squeamish. So what exactly is going on?
Related: Oil Plunges to Six Year Low
After surviving one of the wildest weeks on record, the stock market ends its worst month since 2012. Analysts blame conditions on a slowdown in China’s economy and concerns that the Federal Reserve will raise interest rates. Some speculate things won’t improve soon.
Scott Clemons, chief investment strategist at Brown Brothers Harriman Private Bank to the New York Times “I think the investor complacency we had earlier in the summer has made this market primed to overact to basically anything out there.”
U.S. crude oil prices also had a crazy ride this month, hitting its lowest price of the 21st century last monday before shooting back up almost $10 a barrel within three days. The commodity ends the month at close to $50.
The tie between crude prices and stock market fluctuation is tenuous, but the recent turmoil in financial markets has had a particularly big impact of the price of oil. The slowdown in China and the panic of other emerging markets contribute to the volatility. This latest surge is an example of what can happen when investors are lured by the swings in oil market and start making bets on pricing.
Anthony Starkey, energy analysis manager for Bentek Energy commented that “It’s really being driven by the speculators. That’s why we’re seeing such wild swings.”