Data: Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City; Chart: Axios Visuals

Oil patch bankruptcies are piling up and prices are still in the financial danger zone for a significant amount of producers despite some recovery, per a Kansas City Fed survey.

Why it matters: The finding from the bank — whose region includes the producing states of Oklahoma, Wyoming and Colorado — underscores the sector's peril.

  • The Kansas City Fed report came on the heels of the latest tally of industry insolvencies from the law firm Haynes and Boone.
  • They found that 18 producers filed for bankruptcy in the second quarter, up from five the prior quarter and the most since Q2 of 2016, when companies were reeling from the last bust.

Driving the news: The Kansas City Fed survey, released Friday, finds ...

  • "Over two-thirds of firms reported they could survive more than a year if current revenues were to continue, while around 32% would not survive a year if current revenue levels persist."
  • "A majority of firms in our survey applied for and received SBA PPP loans, but low energy prices have hurt profitability."

What's next: More Chapter 11 filings. Prices for WTI, the U.S. benchmark, have been hanging around the $40-per-barrel range for the last month, far higher than the depths of April's collapse but ... they are still a problem.

  • It's "not a sufficient clearing price for many heavily leveraged shale producers," Haynes and Boone note in the report.
  • "It is reasonable to expect that a substantial number of producers will continue to seek protection from creditors in bankruptcy even if oil prices recover over the next few months."

Go deeper

Ben Geman, author of Generate
Oct 19, 2020 - Energy & Environment

ConocoPhillips nabs Concho in $10B shale mega-deal

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

ConocoPhillips is buying Concho Resources in a $9.7 billion all-stock deal that provides a stark sign of how the pandemic is prompting new consolidation, they announced Monday.

Why it matters: It's the largest deal yet in the U.S. oil patch since the COVID-19 crisis, which has sharply cut demand and sent prices downward.

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Politics: Chris Christie: Wear a mask "or you may regret it — as I did" — Senate Democrats block vote on McConnell's targeted relief bill.
  2. Business: New state unemployment filings fall.
  3. Economy: Why the stimulus delay isn't a crisis (yet).
  4. Health: FDA approves Gilead's remdesivir as a coronavirus treatment How the pandemic might endMany U.S. deaths were avoidable.
  5. Education: Boston and Chicago send students back home for online learning.
  6. World: Spain and France exceed 1 million cases.

Early voting eclipses 2016 total with 12 days until election

People stand in line to vote early in Fairfax, Virginia in September. Photo: Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images

Americans have cast more than 47.1 million ballots in the 2020 presidential election, surpassing the total early-vote count for 2016 with 12 days left until Election Day, according to a Washington Post analysis of voting data.

Why it matters: The election is already underway, as many states have expanded early and mail-in voting options because of the coronavirus pandemic.