Markets Surge Into Positive Gains For Year

Soros Fund Management, a hedge fund firm, took new strides in the energy sector, purchasing stakes in Devon Energy and Transocean, a regulatory filing showed Tuesday. “The investments of investorGeorge Soros and his family, bought 385,497 shares of Devon Energy and 149,000 shares of Transocean in the fourth quarter, according to a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The actions appear to be timely, as oil prices and energy stocks have rebounded this month after a months-long slump.

While Brent crude prices fell about 60 percent between June and January, they have rebounded more than 10 percent in February, with Brent crude hitting its highest this year on Tuesday at $63 a barrel.” [CNBC Energy/Reuters]

Meanwhile another business magnate, Warren Buffet,  has revealed his Berkshire Hathaway investment company has dumped its holdings in energy giants Exxon Mobil (XOM) as well as ConocoPhillips (COP). “Given that Buffett says his favorite holding period is “forever,” seeing him unload major energy companies certainly doesn’t indicate that he sees things getting better anytime soon. The transactions were disclosed Tuesday and covered the period ended Dec. 31, 2014.

It’s somewhat of a big change for Exxon Mobil – as Berkshire held 41.1 million shares as of the third quarter. And Berkshire boosted its stake in Exxon during 2014. Buffett also reported a third quarter holding of 471,994 shares of ConocoPhillips worth $36.1 million.” [USA Today]

Hungary & Russia plan to seek closer energy ties in the form of gas transit lines, undermining the European Union and its fresh rounds of sanctions against the Kremlin. “Russia sees Hungary as a strategic partner and will pursue mutually beneficial energy projects, while Budapest is striving for cooperation with Moscow. The European economy will never be competitive without Russia, the Hungarian PM told Vladimir Putin.

Both Hungary and Russia need each other and are interested in reliable gas supplies and transit, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban said after signing several deals with President Vladimir Putin.” [RT]