Canada Pension Eyes Oil As Prices Drop

oil barrels

The head of the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) said Thursday he sees “increasing opportunity” for investment in Canadian energy companies as oil prices continue their recent decline.

From a Bloomberg interview:

“We are seeing a period now where there may be increasing opportunity in the Western Canadian basin and Canadian energy companies as the market sort of reprices,” Mark Wiseman said in a telephone interview today.

Brent crude extended losses below $80 a barrel, dropping to a four-year low on speculation Saudi Arabia will not reduce output amid a glut of supply.

Wiseman said the resulting decline in oil prices will put pressure on some of the less financially sound energy companies, potentially creating some opportunities for acquisitions.

“Our attraction will be to those best-quality assets, best-quality management teams, and best-quality companies,” he said.

Wiseman, chief executive officer of the fund, pointed to Canada Pension’s investment in Seven Generations Energy Ltd. (VII) as an example. The pension fund is the largest shareholder, holding more than 15 percent of its common shares, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Canada Pension, which was an early investor in Seven Generations, didn’t sell shares in the company’s initial public offering last month because it sees long-term opportunities in the company. Seven Generations debuted in Toronto on Oct. 30 at C$18 a share and has since climbed to $22.50 today.

“It’s a great example of the long-term view we take,” Wiseman said. “We made a very conscious decision that we want to watch that value accrete and grow over the long term.”

The CPPIB manages $206 billion in assets for the Canada Pension Plan.


Photo by ezioman via Flickr CC License

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