Thornburg’s Christian Hoffmann in MarketWatch

Here’s why oil majors may struggle to find bargains in the shale patch

Each driller, every oil well, has its own economics, which hinge on future crude prices

It may be tempting to think oil giants like Exxon Mobil Corp. will swoop in and pick up smaller crude producers at bargains, given the debt on a wide swath of weaker energy companies now trades at fire-sale prices.
But a takeover spree won’t be so easy to pull off, as depressed crude prices leave even the sector’s energy stalwarts without a clear picture of their own product’s worth. There’s also unease about when, and how much, crude will be needed once the coronavirus threat subsides.
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