Williams Partners sets offering
TULSA — Williams Partners L.P. has priced a public offering of $750 million of its 3.35 percent senior notes due 2022 at a price of 99.975 percent of par, the company said Thursday. The expected settlement date for the offering is Aug. 14. Williams Partners plans to use the net proceeds from the offering to repay amounts outstanding under the partnership's credit facility and for general partnership purposes. UBS Securities, Wells Fargo Securities, RBS Securities Inc., RBC Capital Markets and Credit Agricole Securities (USA) Inc. are acting as joint book-running managers for the offering.
Drought drives feed costs up
WASHINGTON — Livestock farmers and ranchers seeing their feed costs rise because of the worst drought in a quarter-century are demanding that the Environmental Protection Agency waive production requirements for corn-based ethanol. One-third of House members have also signed onto a letter urging EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson to relax ethanol production targets in light of corn supply concerns and spiking prices. The EPA says it is working with the Agriculture Department and is keeping a close eye on crop estimates and how they might relate to the biofuel program.
Natural gas prices swoon
NEW YORK — A late-day swoon knocked out what had been a big gain for natural gas prices on Thursday. Natural gas rose as much as 19 cents per 1,000 cubic feet after a government report showed a smaller than expected increase in U.S. supplies. Futures ended the day up just 1.2 cents at $2.945 per 1,000 cubic feet. The Energy Information Administration reported that natural gas in storage grew by 24 billion cubic feet to 3.241 trillion cubic feet for the week ended Aug. 3. Analysts expected a rise of 27 billion cubic feet to 31 billion cubic feet, according to a survey by Platts, the energy information arm of McGraw-Hill Cos. Natural gas futures have increased about 55 percent since hitting a 10-year low in April because of record-setting hot summer weather.