European Shale Gas “Watch List”

By Travis Johnson, Stock Gumshoe, June 11, 2010

Today, for your Friday File pleasure, we’re doing something a little bit different … looking at a tease for two stocks that haven’t yet been recommended — stocks that Marin Katusa at Casey’s Energy Report has on his “watch list” and thinks might present a buying opportunity soon.

Both are plays on European shale gas (as opposed to the shale oil play that has been touted six ways to Sunday, particularly in the guise of Toreador Resources from those “oil under the Eiffel Tower” teasers).

The basic pitch is that the technology that has unlocked natural gas from the Marcellus Shale and the Fayetteville Shale and Barnett Shale in the US (among several other major shale plays) is revolutionary in cutting natural gas prices and improving the US inventories … but that it’s almost unheard of in Europe, where natural gas is both a financial and a geopolitical concern thanks to most of Europe’s dependence (especially the Eastern half) on Russia for natural gas supplies.

That dependence that makes folks in Gdansk and Berlin feel very vulnerable in the cold winters, especially at times, as in recent years, when Russia and the Ukraine were at each others throats over gas and the supplies got cut off (most of the pipelines from Russia to Europe travel through Ukraine).

We’ve seen pitches for “breaking Putin’s stronghold on gas” before — they’ve varied, some for North African or Mediterranean gas explorers, others for big projects like InterOil’s in Papua New Guinea that will benefit from gas price increases, though not specifically from European demand.

But we haven’t seen much about actually producing gas in Europe … so that, combined with the fact that these are tiny, little-known investments from a pretty respected newsletter guy who I don’t write about much, leads me to want to share them with you … even if they aren’t quite “recommendations” from Katusa just yet, perhaps you’ll want to put them on your “watchlist,” too.

But first, I have to figure out which stocks they are … buckle up!

Here’s the opening of the pitch, just in case you’re not all fired up already:

“Russia’s stranglehold on European energy is losing its mighty grip. Which means NOW is the time to profit from…

“The Energy Revolution the Russians Don’t Want You to Know About

“Armed with new technology, a few innovative companies have ...

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