Why Has Big Oil Struggled to Catch on to the Shale Boom?

Why Has Big Oil Struggled to Catch on to the Shale Boom?

Shale oil and gas has been a boon for several domestic exploration and production companies, but not everyone has had as much success accessing this newer resource. Both ExxonMobil and Royal Dutch Shell stated during their recent conference calls that their North American shale assets have not performed as expected. What is most surprising about that revelation is that, unlike previous quarters, natural gas prices have been steadily increasing and the spread between domestic and foreign crudes is at its lowest in a couple years.

So what is making these giant oil companies struggle? One issue that could be likely is that big oil is at a slight disadvantage due to not being first movers in these spaces. Therefore, these big companies may have ended up with more acreage outside the "sweet spots" in these new shale plays. Tune into the video below where Fool.com contributor Tyler Crowe looks at the rough quarter in shale for the oil giants, and ponders what these companies can do to turn it around.

The experience of the oil giants in the shale revolution should be a cautionary tale for investors: not every company will benefit. So picking the best companies for your portfolio is akin to picking a needle from a pile of rusty needles. For this reason, we have put together a comprehensive look at three energy companies set to soar during this transformation in the energy industry. Let us help you discover these three companies that are spreading their wings by checking out our special report, "3 Stocks for the American Energy Bonanza." Simply click here and we will give you free access to this valuable report.

The article Why Has Big Oil Struggled to Catch on to the Shale Boom? originally appeared on Fool.com.

Fool contributor Tyler Crowe has no position in any stocks mentioned. You can follow him at Fool.com under the handle TMFDirtyBird, on Google +, or on Twitter: @TylerCroweFool. The Motley Fool recommends Total SA. (ADR). The Motley Fool has the following options: long January 2014 $30 calls on Chesapeake Energy. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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Originally published