Chesapeake Energy reports stronger than expected Q4 production

|About: Chesapeake Energy Corporation (CHK)|By:, SA News Editor

Chesapeake Energy (NYSE:CHK+2.8% pre-market after a Q4 operational update estimates production averaged 462K-464K boe/day, below the 593K boe/day in the year-ago quarter but above analyst consensus expectations for 448K boe/day.

Q4 oil production averaged 86K-87K bbl/day, slightly above analyst consensus of 85.2K; CHK says divested Utica oil volumes have been completely replaced by oil volume growth in the Powder River Basin and Eagle Ford Shale in the two months following the sale.

CHK also says total debt has been cut by $1.8B from year-end 2017, and asset sales generated more than $2B in net proceeds during 2018, which facilitated the retirement of term loan and senior secured second lien debt.

CHK says it plans reduce 2019 capex by lowering its rig count by ~20%, expecting to average 14 rigs vs. 18 currently, and capital efficiency should improve as total net capital per rig line is projected to decrease by 15%-20% from 2018.

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