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Global Credit Research - 04 Jun 2010
Approximately $12.9 billion of rated debt securities affected
New York, June 04, 2010 -- Moody's Investors Service has today revised to negative from stable the
outlook on the Baa3 senior unsecured rating of Anadarko Petroleum Corporation
and its guaranteed subsidiaries.
Moody's action reflects the considerable uncertainty associated with Anadarko's
potential 25% share of the clean up costs and financial liabilities
stemming from the April 20 explosion on the Transocean Deepwater Horizon
drilling rig and oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. Anadarko is a
25% owner of the well with a non-operated working interest.
Moody's notes that BP, the 65% owner and operator of the
well, has undertaken a comprehensive response effort with the support
of the US authorities and in cooperation with some of its industry peers.
However, to date BP has been unable to stop the leak. Despite
recent containment efforts, this may continue to be the case for
some time and costs and claims will continue to escalate as it pursues
other efforts. BP said on Tuesday, June 1st that its total
clean-up costs already stand at $990 million.
Moody's notes, however, that at this time it is not
known how much of the $990 million and future accruing costs will
be allocated on a 25% basis to Anadarko. Moody's further
notes that it remains difficult at this stage to assess the full extent
of the costs and business impact of this accident on Anadarko's financial
position and liquidity. The future quality of the company's
credit profile will be in large part dependent on the steps Anadarko's
management is willing, and able, to take to maintain financial
flexibility and address its share of liabilities stemming from the disaster.
Anadarko's financial position has recently benefited from robust operating
results and cash flow generation, which provides some cushion against
the potential financial impact of the incident. However,
while Moody's believes that today it is too early to define that impact
to Anadarko's financial profile, the negative outlook reflects
downward pressure on the Baa3 rating and better positions Moody's
to take further ratings actions as events develop possibly even in the
Anadarko holds insurance to cover the first $178 million of its
share of clean-up costs and another $1.6 billion
is available from the Federal Oil Spill Liability Trust Fund. Additionally,
the company has approximately $3.5 billion of cash on hand,
$1.3 billion of available revolving credit, and no
debt due through the rest of 2010. Over the next two years,
debt due totals $707 million in 2011, and $170 million
in 2012. In addition, the company has other significant financial
resources and flexibility. In addition to tapping its most liquid
resources, Anadarko could, among other things, re-allocate
capital spending, sell assets, delay spending, and farm-out
assets, as necessary, to maintain financial flexibility.
To date for fiscal year 2010 Anadarko has experienced robust growth from
production. And, while the US Government-mandated
moratorium on deepwater drilling is likely to affect the company's
near-term capital plans, near-term production growth
will not be affected as it potentially shifts exploration and development
plans to other parts of the world for the next two-to-three
No matter what the ultimate outcome for Anadarko in this accident,
Moody's believes that the impact on future drilling and production
costs for Anadarko and its peers in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico,
where it is a large producer, and in other deepwater regions globally,
will have a significant impact and uncertainty for the foreseeable future.
Any restrictions or other kinds of regulatory constraints, such
as tougher safety requirements and more rigorous inspections of drilling
operations, could in the longer-term have a detrimental impact
on Anadarko and other leading industry producers both operationally and
The last rating action on Anadarko was May 7, 2008, at which
time Moody's changed the company's outlook to stable from
The principal methodology used in rating Anadarko was Moody's Global Independent
Exploration and Production Industry rating methodology published in December
2008. The methodology is available on www.moodys.com
in the Rating Methodologies sub-directory under the Research &
Ratings tab. Other methodologies and factors that may have been
considered in the process of rating this issuer can also be found in the
Rating Methodologies sub-directory on Moody's website.
Anadarko Petroleum Corporation, a large independent exploration
and production company, is headquartered in The Woodlands,
Francis J. Messina
Vice President - Senior Analyst
Corporate Finance Group
Moody's Investors Service
Moody's revises outlook on Anadarko's ratings to negative
Thomas S. Coleman
Senior Vice President
Corporate Finance Group
Moody's Investors Service
No Related Data.
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