Range Resources shares rally on production update


FORT WORTH, Texas -- Shares of Range Resources Corp. climbed Thursday after the company gave an upbeat report on third-quarter oil and natural gas production.

THE SPARK: Range said that production in the third quarter rose 47 percent above the same period last year and 10 percent above the second quarter. The preliminary results beat a company forecast for gas and natural gas liquids.

Range credited its drilling in the Marcellus and horizontal Mississippian oil fields.

Natural gas accounted for 79 percent of third-quarter production at 623.3 million cubic feet of gas per day, a 52 percent jump from a year earlier. Natural gas liquids accounted for 15 percent of production or 20,040 barrels per day, and oil was 6 percent of production, or 7,748 barrels per day. Production of natural gas liquids rose 30 percent from a year ago, while oil production was up 36 percent.

The results topped a previous forecast from the Fort Worth company, which had called for average daily production of 618 million to 620 million cubic feet of gas; 18,300 to 18,600 barrels of natural gas liquids; and 7,600 to 7,800 barrels of oil.

However, prices fell, reflecting the oversupply of gas. The company got $4.88 per thousand cubic feet of gas, compared with $6.41 a year ago and $4.74 in the second quarter of 2012.

CEO and President Jeff Ventura said the company was on track to meet its target of boosting production 35 percent for the full year, while staying within its capital-spending plan.

SHARE ACTION: The shares rose $2.46, or 3.5 percent, to $72.72 in midday trading, after earlier spiking to $73.26. In the past year, they have zigzagged from a high of $74.93 last October to a low of $52.34 in January.