SNL Energy editors' picks for the best stories for the week ended Dec. 30.
1. The 10 most influential people in energy in 2016
Politics was a topic that dominated much of 2016, with the race for the U.S. presidency gripping the nation and ultimately setting the stage for tremendous change in the energy sector. It's no surprise then that both outgoing President Barack Obama, who set the regulatory agenda that has influenced the course of the industry over his eight years in the White House, and incoming President-elect Donald Trump, who has vowed to undo that agenda, made S&P Global Market Intelligence's list of the most influential people in the U.S. energy sector in 2016.
2. Flush with cash, power and renewables buyers find returns in scale, aggregation
What happens when energy dealmakers, flush with cash, see a market with limited investment opportunities? The answer, increasingly, is to either accept lower returns, or channel some of Wall Street's creative spirit to match big funds with bigger ideas.
3. Propane prices could face upside risk on inventory normalization
Cold and wintry weather across the Midwest in December weighed on propane inventories as consumers filled tanks in anticipation. While prices have been bolstered by strength in crude oil recently, increased heating demand could also remain a factor.
4. Top 10 coal events of 2016
The past year has been a turbulent one for coal. Some large mines showed the lowest production levels in years, while the federal election and a turnaround in metallurgical coal prices injected new hope into the ailing industry. S&P Global Market Intelligence has compiled a list of what we think are the top 10 most significant news events of 2016, in no particular order.
5. Northeast gas-driller stocks shine in year of recovery from ugly 2015
Riding steadily rising natural gas prices, stocks in Appalachian shale drillers have rebounded from a turbulent 2015 to outperform benchmark indexes throughout 2016. An equal-weighted basket of the top 10 independent Appalachian gas producers gained 51% year-to-date through the end of trading Dec. 27, according to S&P Capital IQ data.