Friday Afternoon Links
2. Baker-Hughes reported today that the share of rigs drilling for natural gas fell to 30.2% for the week ending May 18, the lowest share ever for natural gas since Baker-Hughes started tracking the oil/gas drilling split back in 1987. Market forces at work.
3. "In the Bakken, the latest slogan is, “Build, baby, build.” A Bakken Housing Summit hosted in Williston this week calls for 5,000 new homes to be built in 24 months. Organizer Jeff Zarling said that 5,000 may not be the magic number, but the theme was designed to convey the magnitude of the oil boom on western North Dakota’s housing needs to stakeholders around the country."
I see some shovel-ready (shale-ready?) construction jobs here from the economic stimulus program known as "Bakken shale oil."
4. "North Dakota airline boardings are setting records, due in large part to the influx of people into the booming western oil patch. Six of the state's eight commercial airports had record boardings in April, and statewide there was an increase over the year of nearly 24 percent. In the western oil patch, the Williston airport saw a 36 percent increase in boardings over the year, the Minot airport a 69 percent rise and the Dickinson airport a 74 percent jump."
Another example of the "Bakken shale oil economic stimulus."
5. On the international front, a) Mexican economic growth accelerated to 4.6% in Q1, the fastest pace since Q3 2010, prompting several analysts to upgrade 2012 growth forecasts and b) Japan's economic growth accelerated to 4.1% in Q1.
More double-digit home sales gains for April:
7. "Huntsville AL home sales increased 31.8% from March. It's also a 19% rise over April's five-year sales average. It's the fifth-consecutive month that Huntsville area home sales have improved over the same month a year ago. The range of increases throughout Alabama is about 10 to 13 percent."
8. "The Northern Ohio Regional Multiple Listing Service is reporting a 12% climb in the number of sold listings in April, reaching 3,050 from 2,716 in April 2011. The number of listings sold also rose 7% in April from March. On a year-to-date basis through the end of April, sales are up 16% to 10,624 this year from 9,143 in the first four months of 2011."