Author Archive: Tom Sanzillo

Director of Finance Tom Sanzillo has 30 years of experience in public and private finance, including as a first deputy comptroller of New York State, where he held oversight over a $156 billion pension fund and $200 billion in municipal bond programs. 


IEEFA Op-Ed: Investors Should Steer Clear of the Keystone Pipeline

IEEFA Op-Ed: Investors Should Steer Clear of the Keystone Pipeline

Superfluous, High-Risk Infrastructure the Markets Cannot Support

The oil industry is in trouble, beset by bankruptcies of junior companies, write-downs by major producers, and canceled or drastically delayed projects across the board. The last thing it needs is the proposed Keystone XL pipeline, which President Trump this week moved to resurrect after only five days in office. If the president gets the […]

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IEEFA Update: Exxon Trouble

More Stranded Assets Loom as Market Shift Continues

In writing off a couple of billion dollars of difficult-to-tap Rocky Mountain gas holdings, ExxonMobil this morning is diverting attention from key bigger-picture truths. More write-downs loom, and will probably come sooner than later, including on the company’s 4.6 billion barrels of sand-locked oil in Canada. We expect that particular chunk of the ExxonMobil stranded-asset portfolio […]

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IEEFA Puerto Rico: How to Play Hardball With Bondholders

Lessons for PREPA on Placing Customers (and the Economy) Ahead of Creditors

How much of its more than $8 billion in debt can the essentially bankrupt Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority pay back? A federal oversight board appointed four months ago to supervise debt restructuring for the entire Puerto Rican government offered up an indication last week. The board, empaneled in October under the auspices of the […]

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IEEFA U.S. Coal Outlook 2017: Short-Term Gains Muted by Prevailing Weaknesses in Fundamentals

IEEFA U.S. Coal Outlook 2017: Short-Term Gains Muted by Prevailing Weaknesses in Fundamentals

Production Declining by as Much as 40 Million Tons; Prices Failing to Benefit Shareholders or Stimulate New Investment; Anemic Exports; Little or No Gain From Regulatory Relief; Increasingly Dim Employment Prospects

We’re out this morning with our annual outlook for U.S. coal markets, and the picture isn’t pretty. We see the potential for some short-lived strength in the current uptick for coal producers but the title of our assessment sums up the larger view: “Short-Term Gains Will Be Muted by Prevailing Weaknesses in Fundamentals.” You can […]

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IEEFA Update: Renewable Energy, Gone Mainstream, Is a Rising Tide

IEEFA Update: Renewable Energy, Gone Mainstream, Is a Rising Tide

As Chinese Companies Lead the Charge, Others Will Join. Might the U.S. Miss the Boat?

If the U.S. turns away from the rise of renewable energy, it will be fighting a tide on which others will ride high. Leading the surge will be China, which already has a huge advantage in its current position at the front of the pack, as IEEFA chronicled last week in a report by Tim […]

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IEEFA Puerto Rico: Time for an Electricity Inspector General

Regulator Has Little Reason to Trust PREPA’s Consultants and Executives

The rate case currently before the Puerto Rico Energy Commission is like none we have ever seen. As we outlined in a commentary a couple of weeks ago, the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority seems to have no qualms about starving its electricity grid to pay its bondholders. An honest rate case requires a certain […]

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IEEFA Energy Swamp Watch: An Oil-Industry Bailout Is in the Works in Washington

Rex Tillerson’s Objective as Head of U.S. Foreign Policy Would Be to Orchestrate a Worldwide Price Increase

Rex Tillerson, after 10 years at the helm of ExxonMobil, is leaving behind a company with much lower revenues than when he took over, higher long-term debt, lower payouts to shareholders and declining cash reserves. ExxonMobil during Tillerson’s tenure has also had to scale back its oil-reserve numbers as a prolonged oil price decline has […]

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IEEFA Energy Swamp Watch: The Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority Would Starve Its Electric Grid to Pay Its Bondholders

IEEFA Energy Swamp Watch: The Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority Would Starve Its Electric Grid to Pay Its Bondholders

Peculiarities in a Proposed Debt-Restructuring Deal That Aims Only to Please Off-Island Interests

This blog starts a series we’re calling the IEEFA Energy Swamp Watch, in which we’ll describe the imprudence in some of the unseemly, wasteful and abusive financial practices we run across in our research. Most of the questionable activity we see is within the bounds of law—which is not the same as being within the […]

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IEEFA Exxon: A Company in Need of More Accountability at the Top

IEEFA Exxon: A Company in Need of More Accountability at the Top

As Directors Ponder CEO's Successor, Will They Seek a Much-Needed Change in Meeting Performance Standards?

ExxonMobil has been reducing its cash returns to investors over the past few years, a trend we highlighted in our report last week, “Red Flags on Exxon Mobil,” but has still paid out far more to investors than standard financial metrics would support.  Indeed, all indicators, including the company’s recent announcement that it will likely de-book […]

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IEEFA Update: The Global Energy Transformation Remains on Track

IEEFA Update: The Global Energy Transformation Remains on Track

U.S. Presidential Election Results Regardless, the Gathering Transition to Renewables Continues

Regardless of any potential or even likely shift in U.S. energy policies, the transition of global energy markets is firmly entrenched. A succession of financial and technology breakthroughs position renewable energy and efficiency as clearly price competitive in an increasing number of energy markets  Policy action, with the ratification of the Paris climate accord, reflects […]

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