Freeport-McMoRan is moving to sell off its oil and gas assets in 2016, including holdings in the Gulf of Mexico, the Haynesville shale formation and other natural gas assets in Louisiana, Reuters reported this week. The move would ends what the news service described as the company’s “ill-fated foray” into oil and gas assets in recent years. The most significant investment in that area was the purchase of two exploration companies for a total of $19 billion in 2013, when oil prices were twice what they are today.
The oil and gas assets are currently expected to be worth about $3 billion, Reuters reported based on conversations with individuals involved in the potential sale.
In 2014, only about 20 percent of Freeport-McMoRan’s $21 billion in revenue came from its copper interests, compared to about 20 percent from oil, according to Reuters.
Freeport-McMoran had been based in New Orleans until 2007, when it moved its headquarters to Phoenix, Ariz. The company maintains some corporate staff in the New Orleans area.