As good as Abu Dhabi’s $7.5 billion investment is for Citigroup, something more important happened: An oil state swollen with petrodollars poured money into an American business with an ailing stock. Most likely, this is only the beginning, Cramer said.
Near-$100 oil has Middle Eastern coffers bulging, and thanks to a weak dollar that money goes a lot further in the U.S. than Europe. So who’s the next target? Cramer thinks Halliburton .
Halliburton’s international business is actually quite strong. Foreign revenues were up 25% year-over-year last quarter. But the North American pressure-pumping business that Wall Street is concerned with is expecting 5% price erosion next year. As a result, traders have pushed the stock down 14.5% in the past month.
But an oil-services firm like Halliburton is just what Abu Dhabi or Dubai, home to the company’s headquarters needs. It costs a lot to keep mature oil fields producing the same amount of oil, and that money goes straight to companies like HAL. And as new oil sources get harder to reach, the technology Halliburton has been developing to get at them becomes much more valuable.
The investments HAL made in technology and international growth should start to pay off in 2008, Cramer said. But if Wall Street doesn’t notice, Abu Dhabi or Dubai should.
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