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Capturing Rents from Natural Resource Abundance: Private Royalties from U.S. Onshore Oil & Gas Production

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  • Brown, Jason P.
  • Fitzgerald, Timothy
  • Weber, Jeremy G.

Abstract

Innovation-spurred growth in oil and gas production from shale formations led the U.S. to become the global leader in producing oil and natural gas. Because most shale is on private lands, drilling companies must access the resource through private lease contracts that provide a share of the value of production – a royalty – to mineral owners. We investigate the competitiveness of leasing markets by estimating how much mineral owners capture geologically-driven advantages in well productivity through a higher royalty rate. We estimate that the six major shale plays generated $39 billion in private royalties in 2014, however, extraction firms capture most of the benefit from resource abundance, with a doubling of the ultimate recovery of the average well in a county leading to a 2 percentage point increase in the average royalty rate (an 11 percent increase). The low pass-through is consistent with firms exercising market power in private leasing markets.

Suggested Citation

  • Brown, Jason P. & Fitzgerald, Timothy & Weber, Jeremy G., 2015. "Capturing Rents from Natural Resource Abundance: Private Royalties from U.S. Onshore Oil & Gas Production," 2015 AAEA & WAEA Joint Annual Meeting, July 26-28, San Francisco, California 205657, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:aaea15:205657
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Catherine Hausman & Ryan Kellogg, 2015. "Welfare and Distributional Implications of Shale Gas," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 46(1 (Spring), pages 71-139.
    2. Marchand, Joseph & Weber, Jeremy, 2015. "The Labor Market and School Finance Effects of the Texas Shale Boom on Teacher Quality and Student Achievement," Working Papers 2015-15, University of Alberta, Department of Economics.
    3. Brown, Jason & Fitzgerald, Timothy & Weber, Jeremy G., 2016. "Asset Ownership, Windfalls, and Income: Evidence from Oil and Gas Royalties," Research Working Paper RWP 16-12, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City.
    4. Driouchi, Ahmed & Harkat, Tahar, 2016. "Knowledge Economy, Global Innovation Indices, Rents and Governance in Arab Economies," MPRA Paper 73507, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    5. Aurélien Saussay, 2018. "Can the US shale revolution be duplicated in continental Europe? An economic analysis of European shale gas resources," Sciences Po publications info:hdl:2441/3vsrea3gla9, Sciences Po.
    6. repec:eee:jrpoli:v:55:y:2018:i:c:p:196-209 is not listed on IDEAS
    7. Karen Maguire & John V. Winters, 2016. "Energy Boom and Gloom? Local Effects of Oil and Natural Gas Drilling on Subjective Well-Being," Economics Working Paper Series 1607, Oklahoma State University, Department of Economics and Legal Studies in Business.
    8. repec:eee:enepol:v:111:y:2017:i:c:p:281-296 is not listed on IDEAS
    9. Komarek, Timothy M., 2016. "Labor market dynamics and the unconventional natural gas boom: Evidence from the Marcellus region," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 45(C), pages 1-17.
    10. Cronshaw, Ian & Grafton, R. Quentin, 2016. "Economic benefits, external costs and the regulation of unconventional gas in the United States," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 98(C), pages 180-186.
    11. Joseph Marchand & Jeremy Weber, 2018. "Local Labor Markets And Natural Resources: A Synthesis Of The Literature," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 32(2), pages 469-490, April.
    12. Marchand, Joseph & Weber, Jeremy, 2017. "The Local Effects of the Texas Shale Boom on Schools, Students, and Teachers," Working Papers 2017-12, University of Alberta, Department of Economics, revised 26 Jan 2018.
    13. repec:spr:anresc:v:61:y:2018:i:1:d:10.1007_s00168-018-0861-x is not listed on IDEAS
    14. Ben Gilbert & Gavin Roberts, 2018. "Supply-side links in oil and gas markets," Working Papers 2018-04, Colorado School of Mines, Division of Economics and Business.
    15. Rickman, Dan S. & Wang, Hongbo, 2018. "What Goes Up Must Come Down? A Case Study of the Recent Oil and Gas Employment Cycle in Louisiana, North Dakota and Oklahoma," MPRA Paper 87252, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    16. Rakitan, Timothy John, 2017. "Essays in the economics of energy development and disamenities," ISU General Staff Papers 201701010800007207, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
    17. Jeremy G. Weber & J. Wesley Burnett & Irene M. Xiarchos, 2016. "Broadening Benefits from Natural Resource Extraction: Housing Values and Taxation of Natural Gas Wells as Property," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 35(3), pages 587-614, June.
    18. Brown, Jason, 2017. "Response of Consumer Debt to Income Shocks: The Case of Energy Booms and Busts," Research Working Paper RWP 17-5, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City.
    19. Aurélien Saussay, 2017. "Can the US shale revolution be duplicated in continental Europe?: An economic analysis of European shale gas resources," Sciences Po publications info:hdl:2441/2b9jeu7kmm9, Sciences Po.
    20. Badia, Marc & Duro, Miguel & Jorgensen, Bjorn N. & Ormazabal, Gaizka, 2017. "Market-wide Effects of Off-Balance Sheet Disclosures:," CEPR Discussion Papers 12152, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    21. Dong, Xiao & Klaiber, Allen & Gopalakrishnan, Sathya & Wrenn, Douglas H., 2018. "Silence of Falling Trees: Hidden Forest Loss from Shale Gas Development," 2018 Annual Meeting, August 5-7, Washington, D.C. 274446, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
    22. repec:eee:eneeco:v:69:y:2018:i:c:p:295-306 is not listed on IDEAS
    23. Jović, Srđan & Maksimović, Goran & Jovović, David, 2016. "Appraisal of natural resources rents and economic development," Resources Policy, Elsevier, vol. 50(C), pages 289-291.
    24. Hess, Joshua & Manning, Dale & Iverson, Terry & Cutler, Harvey, 2016. "Uncertainty, Learning, and Local Opposition to Hydraulic Fracturing," MPRA Paper 79238, University Library of Munich, Germany.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Community/Rural/Urban Development; Environmental Economics and Policy; Resource /Energy Economics and Policy;

    JEL classification:

    • L71 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Primary Products and Construction - - - Mining, Extraction, and Refining: Hydrocarbon Fuels
    • Q32 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Nonrenewable Resources and Conservation - - - Exhaustible Resources and Economic Development
    • Q35 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Nonrenewable Resources and Conservation - - - Hydrocarbon Resources
    • R11 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General Regional Economics - - - Regional Economic Activity: Growth, Development, Environmental Issues, and Changes

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