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Interested in gaining exposure to oil & gas drilling companies? Do you prefer stocks that can bring in profits over the long term? Do you prefer companies with strong profits? You might be interested in this list.

EPS growth (earnings per share growth) illustrates the growth of earnings per share over time. The 5-Year Expected EPS Growth Rate is a long-term annual growth estimate, where the growth projections are made by analysts, the company or other credible sources.

EPS growth (earnings per share growth) illustrates the growth of earnings per share over time. EPS growth rates help investors identify stocks that are increasing or decreasing in profitability. This profitability metric is generally a key driver in the price of the stock as it directly correlates to the profitability of the company as a whole.

The Net Margin is a profitability metric that illustrates, by percentage, how much of every dollar earned gets turned into a bottom line profit. This is just one of many profitability metrics used by investors and analysts to better understand what the company is being left with at the end of the day. Generally, a firm that can expand its net profit margins over a period of time will see its stock price rise as well due to the trend of increasing profitability. Net Margin = Net Income/Total Revenue.

We first looked for oil & gas drilling stocks. From here, we then looked for companies with projected high growth, measured by 5-year projected EPS growth above 25%. We then looked for businesses that have strong profitability (1-year fiscal EPS Growth Rate>10%)(Net Margin [TTM] >10%). We did not screen out any market caps.

Do you think these stocks should be priced higher? Use our list to help with your own analysis.

1) Concho Resources, Inc. (NYSE:CXO)

Sector:Basic Materials
Industry:Oil & Gas Drilling & Exploration
Market Cap:$9.41B
Beta:1.26

Concho Resources, Inc. has a 5-Year Projected Earnings Per Share Growth Rate of 70.23% and Earnings Per Share Growth Rate of 144.35% and Net Margin of 28.64%. The short interest was 2.21% as of 05/24/2012. Concho Resources Inc., an independent oil and natural gas company, engages in the acquisition, exploration, and development of oil and natural gas properties in the United States. Its principal operating areas are located in the Permian Basin region of southeast New Mexico and west Texas. As of December 31, 2011, the company had estimated proved reserves of 386.

2) Northern Oil and Gas, Inc. (NYSEMKT:NOG)

Sector:Basic Materials
Industry:Oil & Gas Drilling & Exploration
Market Cap:$1.11B
Beta:1.73

Northern Oil and Gas, Inc. has a 5-Year Projected Earnings Per Share Growth Rate of 35.00% and Earnings Per Share Growth Rate of 379.31% and Net Margin of 28.61%. The short interest was 23.97% as of 05/24/2012. Northern Oil and Gas, Inc., an independent energy company, engages in the acquisition, exploration, development, and production of crude oil and natural gas properties primarily in the Bakken and Three Forks formations within the Williston Basin in North Dakota and Montana.

As of December 31, 2011, the company owned working interests in 664 discoveries, consisting of 659 targeting the Bakken and Three Forks formations, and 5 exploratory wells targeting other formations; it developed approximately 52,219 net acres and had approximately 17,290 net acres in the process of drilling and completing.

3) Rex Energy Corporation (NASDAQ:REXX)

Sector:Basic Materials
Industry:Oil & Gas Drilling & Exploration
Market Cap:$567.92M
Beta:2.22

Rex Energy Corporation has a 5-Year Projected Earnings Per Share Growth Rate of 33.60% and Earnings Per Share Growth Rate of 120.40% and Net Margin of 20.31%. The short interest was 20.57% as of 05/24/2012. Rex Energy Corporation operates as an independent oil and gas company in the Appalachian Basin and the Illinois Basin.

Rex Energy focuses on the Marcellus Shale drilling projects, and Utica Shale and Upper Devonian Shale exploration activities in the Appalachian Basin. The company also holds interests in the Lawrence Field ASP Flood project, which is an oil recovery project located in Lawrence County, Illinois.

*Company profiles were sourced from Finviz. Financial data was sourced from Yahoo Finance.

Disclosure: I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours.

Source: 3 Oil & Gas Drilling Stocks With Strong Projected Growth Rates And Good Profits