Trudeau names Brian Ferguson, CEO of Cenovus (company along with Encana that’s been reduced to junk bond status) to Economic Advisory Council, possibly the most influencial people to be around PM and Finance Minister Bill Morneau

Cenovus job cuts to total 440 in 2016, dropping staffing numbers by 31% since 2014 by Amanda Stephenson, April 1, 2016, Calgary Herald

[Did Cenovus and Encana lie when they promised frac’ing brings jobs jobs jobs?]

A total of 440 jobs will be cut at Cenovus Energy Inc. this year as a result of continued low oil prices.

The Calgary-based oil producer announced in February that it would be cutting staff in the months ahead. Cenovus posted a loss of $641 million in the fourth quarter.

Spokesperson Brett Harris confirmed on Thursday that 190 contractors have already left the company and an additional 250 positions at the company’s Calgary and field office locations will be eliminated this month.

“These are really difficult decisions, but very necessary in this economic environment,” [Especially when you’re a company rotted with greed?] Harris said. “You have to match your work with your workforce.”

Once the cuts are complete, Cenovus will be left with 3,600 contractors and employees — a 31 per cent reduction in overall head count since the end of 2014.

Harris said while the economic climate remains challenging, Cenovus believes it has made the cuts it needs to make to weather the storm.

“As a result of making some significant cost reductions over the last year and a half, we believe we’re now in a financially resilient situation to make it through what could be another year of pretty low oil prices,” he said.

 

Cenovus, Encana Cut to Junk by Moody’s by Rebecca Penty, February 18, 2016, Bloomberg

Cenovus Energy Inc. and Encana Corp. had their debt ratings lowered to junk by Moody’s Investors Service as a prolonged crude-price rout saps cash flows.

Moody’s cut the ratings of senior unsecured notes for both Canadian producers three steps to Ba2, or two levels below investment grade, from Baa2, according to separate statements Thursday. … Encana’s bonds due in 2021 fell 3.5 cents to 62.75 cents on the dollar, yielding 13 percent, while Cenovus’s 2019 notes lost 5.5 cents to 84 cents, yielding 11 percent, according to Trace, the bond-price reporting system of the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority. U.S. crude futures dropped 4 percent to $29.54 a barrel at 11:33 a.m. in New York. Standard & Poor’s reaffirmed Encana’s investment grade rating earlier this month, and the agency also rates Cenovus investment grade.

… The actions Thursday resolve reviews of the companies by Moody’s started in December. While ratings cuts can be seen as lagging indicators that follow bond-market pricing, there can be implications for borrowing costs. Many funds can’t hold high-yield notes, so a cut from investment grade to junk could trigger a wave of selling. … [Emphasis added]

Jeff Rubin: Oil Sands Are ‘Hemorrhaging Red Ink,’ Doomed to Shutter by Mychaylo Prystupa, March 18, 2016, TheTyee.ca

The oil sands are downsizing. Alberta’s Big Oil CEOs are talking to environmentalists. And proposed oil pipelines are in serious trouble. … And the reasons for them have a lot less to do with vocal activist opposition or the Trudeau government’s climate commitments than they do with the brute forces of the global marketplace for oil.

….investors are dumping Canadian oil sands stocks, he said. “Invest in the oil sands?” he mocked. “They are going bankrupt.” 

“We’ve been hearing CEOs of the major banks emphasizing to shareholders their limited exposure to the [oil sands] sector,” Rubin said.

The valuation of Canadian Natural Resources and Canadian Oil Sands has shrunk 60 to 80 per cent, he said. Imperial and Suncor are down 30 to 40 per cent. And once giant oil companies — Encana and Cenovus — have been downgraded to junk bond status. 

Cenovus CEO Brian Ferguson named to Trudeau’s economic advisory council
Council named just days before release of Liberal government’s first budget by CBC News, March 18, 2016

Alberta’s oilpatch will have a voice on what could be the most influential group of people around Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Finance Minister Bill Morneau.

Cenovus [split oil riches from Encana after Ernst lawsuit filed] CEO Brian Ferguson is among the six men and eight women appointed to the federal government’s new economic advisory council, which was unveiled Friday.

The group is made up of business and academic leaders — all of whom will be paid an annual salary of $1.

Their task is to help the government prepare a long-term economic growth strategy, set to be released by the end of the year. [Emphasis added]

Women dominate Liberals’ economic advisory council, Lineup of business and academic leaders includes eight women and six men. Body will chart long-term growth strategy by Andy Blatchford The Canadian Press, March 18, 2016, Toronto Star

OTTAWA—Women will outnumber men on what could turn out to be the most-influential group of people around Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Finance Minister Bill Morneau.

Morneau on Friday unveiled the federal government’s new advisory council, a team that will help draw up a plan designed to get the economy out of a rut.

The lineup of business and academic leaders includes eight women and six men.
The advisers, who will each be paid an annual salary of $1, are responsible for helping the government prepare a long-term growth strategy to be released by the end of the year.
The council members’ names were made public just days before the release of the Liberal government’s first budget.

The budget, to be tabled Tuesday, is expected to spell out much of Ottawa’s plans to spend billions of dollars on measures, such as infrastructure, aimed at boosting productivity and economic growth.

Last month, Morneau announced that the advisory council would be chaired by Dominic Barton, the global managing director of consulting giant McKinsey & Company.

At the time, Morneau said council members would meet him regularly and provide advice “on concrete policy actions to help create the long-term conditions for economic growth focused on the middle class.”

The council also includes prominent business figures such as Mark Wiseman, president and CEO of the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board and Michael Sabia, CEO of the Caisse de depot et placement du Quebec, the province’s largest pension fund manager.
Other members:

Elyse Allen, president and CEO, General Electric Canada

Katherine Barr, general partner, Mohr Davidow Ventures

Jennifer Blanke, chief economist, World Economic Forum

Kenneth Courtis, chairman, Starfort Investment Holdings

Brian Ferguson, president and CEO, Cenovus Energy Inc.

Suzanne Fortier, principal and vice-chancellor, McGill University

Carol Anne Hilton, CEO, Transformation

Carol Lee, CEO and co-founder, Linacare Cosmotherapy Inc.

Christopher Ragan, associate professor of economics at McGill University and chair of the Ecofiscal Commission

Angela Strange, partner, Andreessen Horowitz

Ilse Treurnicht, CEO, MaRS Discovery District.

“I look forward to working with the council members, whose diverse backgrounds and impressive expertise will inform our work as we develop and implement a strategy that will build on the foundation we will lay with budget 2016,” Morneau said in a statement. [Emphasis added]

Women outnumber men on Justin Trudeau’s influential council of economic advisersTeam will be tasked with pulling Canada out of financial rut by Andy Blatchford, The Canadian Press with files from CBC, March 18, 2016

The Canadian Press has learned that Morneau will unveil the federal government’s new advisory council Friday — a team that will help draw up a plan designed to get Canada’s economy out of a rut.

In total, the lineup of business and academic leaders will include eight women and six men.

The advisers, who will be paid a salary of $1, are responsible for helping the government prepare a long-term growth strategy that will be released by the end of the year.

The council members’ names are being made public just days before the release of the Liberal government’s first budget.

Advisers paid $1 salary

The budget, to be tabled next Tuesday, is expected to spell out much of Ottawa’s plans to spend billions of dollars on measures — such as infrastructure — aimed at boosting the country’s productivity and economic growth.

Last month, Morneau announced that the advisory council would be chaired by Dominic Barton, the global managing director of consulting giant McKinsey & Company.

At the time, Morneau said council members would meet with him regularly and provide advice “on concrete policy actions to help create the long-term conditions for economic growth focused on the middle class.”

The council will also include prominent business figures such as Canada Pension Plan Investment Board president and CEO Mark Wiseman and Michael Sabia, CEO of the Caisse de depot et placement du Quebec, the province’s largest pension fund manager.

“I look forward to working with the council members, whose diverse backgrounds and impressive expertise will inform our work as we develop and implement a strategy that will build on the foundation we will lay with budget 2016,” Morneau said in a statement.

Internal federal documents show that Barton, a Canadian, has been called upon in the past to advise the federal government.

He was scheduled to deliver a presentation last May to a deputy ministers’ committee on economic trends and policies.

Barton’s talk was to address the “drivers of change in the global and economic context,” particularly as they relate to innovation, according to a memorandum prepared for the senior associate deputy minister of Employment and Social Development Canada. The briefing note was obtained by The Canadian Press via the Access to Information Act.

Aging population

The document said material provided prior to Barton’s presentation by McKinsey identified several forces responsible for the pace and scale of global change, including:

The rise of emerging markets, with emphasis on the importance of emerging-market cities.

The power of disruptive technologies, which are advances that have increased productivity while driving down demand for labour.

The “massive strains” on all governments of the aging global population, which could force people to work longer.

The shift to more-complex markets has made navigating political risks abroad a necessity.
The changing nature of capitalism that makes longer-term thinking increasingly important for success.

In 2014, Barton and Wiseman co-authored a Harvard Business Review paper that argued “big asset owners,” such as pension funds, insurance firms, sovereign wealth funds and mutual funds, should focus on more on the long term rather than taking a short-term approach.

“Simply put, short-termism is undermining the ability of companies to invest and grow, and those missed investments, in turn, have far-reaching consequences, including slower (gross domestic product) growth, higher unemployment, and lower return on investment for savers,” their report says.

Budget day shoes

Today, Morneau held an event at the Kiwanis Boys and Girls Club in Toronto, where he answered questions about the upcoming budget and explained that the spending plan is designed to help children and middle-class Canadians.

Following in a long tradition of federal finance ministers, he also broke out a new pair of pre-budget shoes.

The black leather lace-ups were from Canadian designer Ron White, and were purchased at a Toronto store for a sale price of $179.99. [Emphasis added]

[Refer also to:

2016: Will Albertans ever learn? Canada’s biggest oil producers, including Cenovus, hoarding near-record pile of cash

2016 03 30: Another Encana Frac Fraud Bribe? Why is Encana buying “best practices” now, years too late? Buy the company out of Pavillion’s frac’d & contaminated aquifers bad news – again?

2015: Who believes what Cenovus or Encana say? And, just how cruel are those companies to their workers? Encana offspring Cenovus apologizes: a lot too little, too late

2015: Cenovus Energy sells royalty lands for $3.3 billion in cash after illegally fracturing Rosebud’s drinking water aquifers (then Encana), and getting away with it

2015: Gerard Protti Sings “I Wanna Stay.” Who is Gerry? Chair of Alberta’s Energy Regulator. AER is: Legally Immune, Charter Violating, “No Duty of Care,” 100 Percent Industry Funded, Deregulating, Non-Enforcing, Lying Propaganda Synergy Machine; Protti IS Director Petromanas; was Encana VP, Lobbyist, Advisor to Cenovus, Creator/Chair of CAPP, Director Alberta Research Council/Innovates …

2014: Encana, Cenovus, SPOG, The AER, Alberta Research Council (ARC), Alberta Environment and the Alberta Government gave funding to the Pembina Institute, long time synergizer

2014: Alberta Petro State: Cenovus, Syncrude and Suncor and other oil and gas companies “helping draft” curriculum for students from kindergarten to Grade 12!

2014: Encana selling two Calgary downtown properties, one owned jointly with Cenovus

2014: Cenovus spills 1300 gallons of drilling fluids at Cold Lake

2014: Is Saskatchewan and North Dakota Bakken Oil safe enough? Cenovus Bakken “oil’s flammability classification is the highest there is, level 4 — the same as methane gas and propane”

2013: Tight oil writedowns spark Cenovus Energy earnings 17 cents per share below expected, Cenovus shares fall 5%; Encana earnings 15 cents per share above expected, shares fall 2%

2013: Encana/Cenovus’ 1.4 Billion Dollar Bow Opens: sights and sounds

2012: Environment minister turns down Cenovus [split from Encana] Energy project over wildlife risk, EnCana Makes First Court Appearance after Being Charged with Violating Canada Wildlife Act

2012: Cenovus boss a new type of CEO

2012: Cenovus, previously Encana, donates $250,000 to the Drumheller Library (near Rosebud) in exchange for naming rights on the Children’s Corner, Youth Area and Community Programs Room

2012: Encana posts big loss, to split U.S. asset sale package

Encana and other producers have been grappling with a North American oversupply of natural gas…. Since it spun off its oil and refinery assets into Cenovus Energy Inc. (TSX:CVE) in 2009, Encana has been focused exclusively on developing natural gas.

2012: Calgary’s towering environmental statement

Cenovus Energy Inc. is taking its fight for environmental credibility to a new battleground: its kitchens inside The Bow. All 78 of them. …

The Bow, controlled by H&R REIT, has been talked about since at least 2004, when Encana began to consider consolidating its office space. Encana owned the project when Gwyn Morgan ran the company, but current CEO Randy Eresman sold it, just as he spun out Cenovus. 

Bio accessed from Cenovus website (March 18, 2016)

Brian Ferguson

President & Chief Executive Officer
Brian is also a member of the Cenovus Board of Directors.

As President & Chief Executive Officer, Brian is accountable for overall leadership of Cenovus’s strategic and operational performance. He is also a Director of Cenovus.

Brian joined a predecessor company in 1984 [Why not admit it was Alberta Energy Corporation, the company with a nasty history outlined in Andrew Nikiforuk’s award-winning spell-binding Saboteurs?] and became a member of the Management Team in 1994. His business experience spans a variety of areas including finance, business development, reserves, strategic planning, evaluations and communications.

2016 03 18 snap accessed Brian Ferguson bio from Cenovus website

Brian earned a Bachelor of Commerce degree, from the University of Alberta, and has completed the University of Western Ontario’s Executive Management program. Brian is a Fellow of the Chartered Professional Accountants of Alberta (FCPA).

Brian sits on the TD Board of Directors and is a board member of the Business Council of Canada. He is also a member of the Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada and was appointed to the federal Minister of Finance’s Advisory Council on Economic Growth. Brian has served on several other boards, including the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers (CAPP) Board of Governors. He continues to serve on CAPP’s Oil Sands CEO Council.

Brian is also active in supporting the community. [But not community water – Brian Ferguson was upper management at Encana when the company illegally frac’d Rosebud’s drinking water aquifers in 2004.] He became Chair of the Calgary Police Foundation in 2011 and, a year later, he was named Calgary’s first Honourary Deputy Police Chief. [Emphasis added]

2009: Encana proceeds with plan to split into two distinct and independent energy companies

CALGARY, Alberta–(BUSINESS WIRE)–The Board of Directors of EnCana Corporation (TSX, NYSE: ECA) has unanimously approved plans to proceed with a corporate reorganization to split EnCana into two highly focused energy companies: one a natural gas company – EnCana (GasCo), which has an outstanding portfolio of prolific shale and other gas resource plays across North America, and the other an integrated oil company – Cenovus Energy Inc., which has industry-leading enhanced oil production and top-performing refineries, as well as an underlying foundation of reliable oil and gas resource plays. This transaction – expected to close November 30, 2009 – is designed to enhance long-term value for EnCana shareholders by creating two sustainable, independent, publicly traded companies, each with an ability to pursue and achieve greater success by employing operational strategies best suited to its unique assets and business plans. [Emphasis added]

2005: EnCana’s CFO Brian Ferguson to step down in 2006 by The Canadian Press

CALGARY (CP) — The chief financial officer of energy giant EnCana Corp. is leaving the company, following the example of CEO Gwyn Morgan, a long-time colleague who is retiring at the end of the year. [Where they running from illegal aquifer fracs?]

2002: Brian Ferguson was corporate secretary of Alberta Energy Corporation (AEC was the notorious dark side that merged with Pan Canadian to become Encana – Read Nikiforuk’s Saboteurs for an excellent history on AEC).

Barring any surprises, such as rival bids, EnCana’s creation is expected to win shareholders’ approval in April.

… Meanwhile, AEC corporate secretary Brian Ferguson is set to take charge of investor relations and legal matters, while PanCanadian’s Gerry Protti would have responsibility for public affairs and an array of duties related to communications

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