Energy Stocks Trading Lower; Gastar Jumps 14% On $72.5 Deal for Oil & Gas Properties in Oklahoma

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Energy stocks are lower today with the NYSE Energy Sector Index slipping about 0.4% and the S&P Energy Index falling about 0.6%. Crude oil for May delivery is down $1.16 to $96.07 per barrel. May natural gas is down 2 cents to $4 per 1 mln BTU.

In company news, Gastar Exploration ( GST ) is up neraly 14% to $2.01 a share, holding nera the top of its trading range today after announcing a deal to acquire proven reserves and undeveloped leasehold interests in central Oklahoma from Chesapeake Energy ( CHK ) for $72.5 mln.

The deal also includes GST buying back 6.8 mln shares of its stock from CHK for $1.44 apiece, or $9.8 mln overall. The companies also agreed to settle all pending litigation between them.

The 157,000 net acres being acquired by GST abut its existing Mid-Continent acreage in Oklahoma and are estimated to contain proven reserves of around 2.8 million barrels of oil equivalent. GST will acquire 176 producing wells with an estimated net present value of about $32.4 mln and daily production of around 177 barrels of crude oil and 54 barrels of natural gas liquids.

In other sector news,

(+) KWK, (+19.6%) Sells 25% stake in a shale-gas project in Texas to Tokyo Gas for $485 mln. Proceeds from the deal will be used to help pay down its $2 bln in debt.

(+) CHK, (+0.5%) Named Chief Operating Officer Steven Dixon as acting CEO while it continues to search for a permanent replacement for the retiring Aubrey McClendon, the company said late Friday.



The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of The NASDAQ OMX Group, Inc.

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This article appears in: Investing , Commodities

Referenced Stocks: CHK , GST

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