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Chesapeake arranging $2 billion loan

OKLAHOMA CITY -- Chesapeake Energy Corp. said Thursday that it arranged a new $2 billion loan to help repay some existing loan and credit facilities.

The oil and natural gas company said that will help improve its financial flexibility as it tries to sell off some assets and repay higher-cost debts.

Chesapeake said last month that it will sell off vast portions of its land and infrastructure in Texas in a series of deals worth roughly $7 billion. The company is trying to shift its focus to oil drilling from natural gas, as the price for natural gas has plunged due to oversupply and soft demand. It also is trying to pay off a heavy debt load that it incurred in recent years as it rushed to buy land and other assets.

The company said Thursday that it hired Bank of America, N.A., Goldman Sachs Bank USA and Jefferies Finance LLC to assist with the arrangement of an unsecured five-year term loan facility. It will use that to repay the remaining debt under the company's existing term loan facility arranged in May 2012 and to repay its corporate revolving credit facility.

Chesapeake's shares fell 21 cents to $20.05 in afternoon trading.

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