Newfield Exploration Company 's NFX reported adjusted fourth-quarter 2017 earnings of 71 cents per share that beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 60 cents. The bottom line also improved from the year-ago quarter's 49 cents.
Total revenues improved from $415 million in the year-ago quarter to $509 million, beating the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $501 million.
Considerable production from the Anadarko Basin and higher realized oil and gas equivalent prices drove fourth-quarter results.
During the quarter, total production totaled 15.6 million barrels of oil equivalent (MMBoe). This was higher than 13.9 MMBoe recorded in the year-ago quarter. Significantly high oil and natural gas equivalent volumes from the Anadarko Basin supported the outperformance.
Natural gas volumes totaled 36.6 billion cubic feet. Oil, condensate and NGLs volumes were 9.5 million barrels.
Newfield Exploration's fourth-quarter oil and natural gas price realizations averaged $32.29 per barrel of oil equivalent as against $31.27 per barrel in the year-ago quarter.
Natural gas prices were $2.58 per thousand cubic feet, oil prices were $49.60 per barrel and NGLs prices were $30.15 per barrel.
At the end of the fourth quarter, Newfield Exploration had cash balance of $326 million. Long-term debt was $2,434 million, which represents a debt-to-capitalization ratio of approximately 63.4%.
Proved Reserves Grow
The company recorded total proved reserves of 680 MMBoe as of Dec 31, 2017. This marked an improvement of almost 33% from the year-ago 513 MMBoe.
Q4 Price Performance
The company's shares have underperformed the industry in the October-to-December quarter. The stock has gained 6.2% compared with the industry's 9%.
For 2018, Newfield Exploration projects capital expenditure of $1,300 million, higher than $1,153 million spending through 2017. Through 2020, the company will likely invest $4.2 billion of capital.
The upstream energy player expects 2018 production between 170 and 183 thousand barrels of oil equivalent per day (MBoe/D). Over the three-year period, Newfield Exploration expects annual production growth between 14% and 18%.
Zacks Rank & Key Picks
Newfield Exploration carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). A few better-ranked players in the energy sector are Statoil ASA STO , Pioneer Natural Resources Company PXD and Cabot Oil & Gas COG . All these stocks sport a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy). You can see the complete list of today's Zacks #1 Rank stocks here .
Headquartered in Stavanger, Norway, Statoil is a major international integrated energy player. The company is expected to witness year-over-year earnings growth of 17.1% in 2018.
Headquartered at Irving, TX, Pioneer Natural Resources is an upstream energy firm. The company delivered an average positive earnings surprise of 66.9% for the last four quarters.
Headquartered in Houston, TX, Cabot is also an upstream energy company. The firm will likely see year-over-year earnings growth of 114.7% in 2018.
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