Offshore energy counters down sharply again as Swiber fallout continues, oil enters bear market

The collapse of Swiber Holdings last Thursday has left traders jittery about the outlook of oil and gas related companies.
The collapse of Swiber Holdings last Thursday has left traders jittery about the outlook of oil and gas related companies.PHOTO: ST FILE

SINAGAPORE - The shares of local offshore energy and marine companies took a beating again on Tuesday morning (Aug 2) after crude oil prices entered a bear market overnight, adding to jitters after the collapse of Swiber Holdings last Thursday.

Ezra Holdings, Vallianz Holdings, Ezion Holdings and Charisma Energy were among the top eight most traded stocks, all falling as investors continued to exit the sector.

Ezra was down 8.51 per cent or 0.4 Singapore cents at 4.3 cents as at 11.15 am. Vallianz lost 8.33 per cent or 0.2 cents to 2 cents while Ezion fell 3.39 per cent or one cent to 28.5 cents.

Charisma Energy was down a sharp 12.5 per cent or 0.1 cent at 0.7 cents.

Shares of Pacific Radiance, which fell to a record low of 17 cents yesterday, fell even lower to 16.7 cents as at 11.15 am.

Trading of Swiber shares remains suspended.

Last Thursday, Swiber shocked the market when it announced liquidation plans. Swiber later surprised the market yet again by saying it intends to restructure and operate under judicial management instead, casting more doubt over the management's handling of the situation.

DBS, a major creditor of Swiber, was also down 1.9 per cent or 25 cents at S$15.11 as at 11.15am Tuesday.

Slumping oil prices also weighed on sentiment. US crude tumbled below US$40 per barrel on Monday for the first time since April on heightened worries of a crude glut despite peak summer fuel demand.

Oil is now more than 20 per cent from its peak in June, meeting the common definition of a bear market and ending a recovery that saw prices almost double from a 12-year low in February.

Last week BP, Royal Dutch Shell and Exxon Mobil all reported second-quarter earnings last week that were worse than estimated.