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US shale drillers feel the financial crunch

The financial pain from lower oil prices is taking its toll on shale producers

US shale producers’ finances are coming under heavy pressure as the oil rout continues. Amid a much-feared double dip in the oil price that has sent prices to lows not seen since 2009, US shale sector earnings have plummeted, debt is on the rise and the sector is bleeding cash. This all points to a shakeout that will see weaker companies forced to sell assets and become takeover targets in the next year and is forcing companies to cut back production. A Petroleum Economist survey of 14 leading shale-focused companies’ second quarter results shows the pain being felt in the shale patch. Their combined earnings swung from a $5.8bn profit in the second quarter of 2014 to a $16.2bn loss in the

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