Oct 6, 2022
Eric Nuttall says he is '100% invested right now' amid OPEC+ production cut
OPEC+ wanted some spare capacity to smooth things out in global energy market: Eric Nuttall
Amid volatility in oil markets, Eric Nuttall, a partner and senior portfolio manager at Ninepoint Partners, said his fund is not holding any cash and is fully invested.
Despite the recent drawdown in energy stocks, Nuttall said in a television interview Thursday that his fund is “100 per cent invested right now.”
Previously this summer, he said his fund was up around 90 per cent, but following heightened recession fears the summer’s gains have pared back to about 50 per cent.
“So I am buying into stocks that are debt-free early next year, are trading at a quarter of what they used to trade at, are awash in free cash and have pledged to give that back to my clients in the form of buybacks and dividends. So I'm extremely optimistic and bullish on the sector for the rest of this year and going forward,” Nuttall said.
In the current environment, Nuttall said his operating investment theme is “pay me.”
“It's our turn to get rewarded for the misery of the past 10 years. We've had a couple of good years recently, but it's been a tough go. So it's hard-earned for my clients to be rewarded for their patience who are going to be rewarded from [the] return of capital in the form of buybacks and dividends,” he said.
Nuttall highlighted two companies in particular that are doing exactly what he wants to see.
“MEG Energy Corp. and Cenovus Energy Inc. have both pledged either beginning next year or at some point next year, they’re going to give us 100 per cent of their free cash flow,” said Nuttall.
OPEC+ agreed to a production cut Wednesday, reducing its collective output by two million barrels a day starting in November.
The reduced production capacity signifies that price does matter, according to Nuttall, and indicates to energy investors that OPEC+ intends to set a US$90-per-barrel oil price floor for Brent crude.
However, Nuttall said he still expects oil to go to US$100 per barrel by the end of the year.
“That means 30 per cent share buybacks, or in the case of Cenovus, we think they can buy back 10 per cent of their shares while paying a 20 per cent dividend next year at US$100 oil,” he said.