With Genel Energy’s (LSE: GENL) shares falling by around 40% yesterday, the company’s woes are clearly not at an end. Despite receiving positive news regarding payments for oil production in recent months, Genel has now been rocked by an update regarding reserves at its Taq Taq field in Iraq.
In fact, Genel has conducted a review of its reservoir model at Taq Taq following a fall in production from the field during the last year, with the review now almost complete. It has found that the proven plus probable (2P) reserves at the field are much lower than previously estimated, with the 2P figure now being 356m barrels of oil (mmbbls) versus the prior estimate of 683 mmbbls. That’s a fall of 48% and with Genel having already produced 184 mmbbls from the field, it leaves just 172 mmbbls at the Taq Taq field.
Due to this, potential future profitability for Genel has taken a major hit and it has also caused a $1bn impairment charge. Alongside this is the continued uncertainty regarding the price of oil as well as the potential for a lack of future payments for oil that has already been produced. As such, it seems unlikely that Genel will return to previous highs following its 93% fall in the last five years.
Also falling heavily in recent years has been Lonmin (LSE: LMI). Its shares are down by 99.9% in the last five years and a full comeback seems almost impossible. That said, Lonmin could be worth buying for less risk-averse investors owing to its low valuation and a new strategy that could help to turn its financial performance around.
For example, Lonmin is slashing its cost base, generating efficiencies and having conducted a fundraising in the latter part of 2015, now has the capital with which to drive through major change in its business model. Certainly, it’s highly dependent on commodity prices, but with its pre-tax loss due to narrow significantly in 2017, investor sentiment could continue to improve following Lonmin’s share price rise of 71% in the last month. And with its shares trading on a price-to-book value (P/B) ratio of 0.2, there’s clear upside potential on offer.
Risks vs rewards
Meanwhile, silver and gold miner Hochschild (LSE: HOCH) has also enjoyed a resurgence of late, with its shares soaring by 47% in the last month. Much of this has been to do with the rising price of precious metals since the turn of the year and with the world economy facing a highly uncertain future, further rises in the prices of gold and silver can’t be ruled out. That’s because investors have historically seen precious metals (and, more specifically, gold) as a store of wealth during economic crises.
With Hochschild expected to make only a small profit this year and next year, its share price performance may fail to mirror recent rises in future. However, with it trading on a P/B ratio of 0.5, it could be worth buying for less risk-averse, long-term investors, although a return to its all-time high of 657p from its current level of 70p seems unlikely.