Weathering the tempest of corporate fraud

July 21st, 2009

Oil & Gas Financial Journal

In the last year, industries across the board have experienced one of the most tumultuous markets in history. No industry, including oil and gas, has been immune from the economic downturn and potential pitfalls of fraud-related incidents. Today’s turbulent market has created the perfect storm for corporate fraud in the world of energy and other business sectors.

Data from the Energy Information Administration (EIA) shows a quick snapshot of the financial uncertainties faced by the oil and gas industry. For instance, the annual price of West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude oil averaged $100 per barrel in 2008. The global economic slowdown is projected to cut these crude prices to an average of $42 per barrel in 2009 and $53 in 2010. The Henry Hub natural gas spot price is projected to decline from an average of $9.13 per thousand cubic feet (Mcf) in 2008 to about $4.70 per Mcf in 2009, but then increase in 2010 to an average of almost $5.90 per Mcf.

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