Energy Business

Deutsche Bank Raises Price Targets on Top Oil Service Stocks

Despite the stomach churning volatility in the markets, one solid place to be this year has been the oil service names. In a new research report, the oil service and equipment analysts at Deutsche Bank say that, although they would not be surprised to see a pullback in the top stocks to buy or the price of West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude, the time to own these top stocks is now. They see the strength of a cyclical recovery in North America increasing, and they feel the current forward earnings estimates may prove to be conservative.

Here are the top stocks rated Buy at Deutsche Bank, including those where the price objectives have been raised.

Baker Hughes Inc. (NYSE: BHI) ranks as one of the top picks at Deutsche Bank. The company recently announced that it would acquire Performix, which is an oilfield software technology company that provides tools that enhance the performance of oil and gas reservoirs. This acquisition will help the company cater to oil and gas companies that are focused on maximizing and improving the productivity of current and new wells. Investors are paid a small 0.9% dividend. The Deutsche Bank price target for the stock is $86. The Thomson/First Call estimate is at $69.19. Baker Hughes closed Wednesday at $66.31. Note that the Deutsche Bank target is the highest on Wall Street and would be a 33% gain for investors.

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Basic Energy Services Inc. (NYSE: BAS) gets a big and needed price boost from the Deutsche Bank team. The positive comments coming from the company management included a solid activity update in March that indicated the utilization levels had increased across all the company’s business segments. Deutsche Bank raised its price target from $18 to $43. The consensus estimate is $27.71, and the stock closed Wednesday at $28.21.

Exterran Holdings Inc. (NYSE: EXH) is another top pick at Deutsche Bank for this year. The company recently completed the acquisition of the compression assets from a division of Chesapeake Energy. The purchase of MidCon Compression allows the company to offer expanded compression services across many of the top shales and basins in the United States. The company pays investors a 1.4% dividend. Deutsche Bank has a $48 price target, and the consensus figure is $44.71. Exterran closed Wednesday at $43.97.

Halliburton Co. (NYSE: HAL) remains one of the top names across all the firms we cover on Wall Street, and it is a stock to buy at Deutsche Bank. The company stands to benefit from continued robust levels of domestic drilling activity and a pickup in international markets. Management believes the company can deliver earnings per share of $6 by 2016, double the level from 2012. Investors receive a 1.0% dividend. The Deutsche Bank price target for the oilfield services giant is $73, and the consensus price estimate is $67.25. Halliburton closed Wednesday at $60.50.

Patterson-UTI Energy Inc. (NASDAQ: PTEN) is another name in which the Deutsche Bank team sees tremendous upside. With strong cash flow generation and continued share repurchases to help as activity levels accelerate, the stock has solid potential for investors at this level. Deutsche Bank has a $35 price target, which is raised from $33. The consensus figure is at $31.89. Investors are paid a 1.3% dividend. Patterson closed Wednesday at $32.69.

Pioneer Energy Services Corp. (NYSE: PES) is another small cap name that could be a huge home run for investors, and the Deutsche Bank team is raising its target on the stock. The company provides contract land drilling services and production services to independent and oil and gas exploration and production companies in the United States and Colombia. The company operates in two segments, Drilling Services and Production Services. The Deutsche Bank price target is raised from $14 to $15, and the consensus is much lower at $12.63. Pioneer Energy closed Wednesday at $13.79.

Schlumberger Ltd. (NYSE: SLB) is another mega cap oil field services stock to buy for the rest of the year and for the future. Strong offshore drilling activity combined with a seasonal rebound in Western Canadian activity have driven Schlumberger’s recent growth. The company continues to see five markets providing strong growth: Russia, Sub-Saharan Africa, the Middle East, China and Australia. Shareholders are paid a 1.6% dividend. The Deutsche Bank price target is $124, but the consensus target is lower at $111.69. Schlumberger closed Wednesday at $100.94.

The Deutsche Bank team thinks that continued high oil prices will spur production, which could ultimately start to bring the price down. With the top oil field services companies already operating at full-steam-ahead, moving the bar higher for production should move earnings higher. For investors, that makes for a good future with these top names to buy.

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