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Newfield Exploration to Buy Chesapeake's Oklahoma Assets

The Woodlands, TX-based Newfield Exploration Company NFX has inked a definitive purchase and sale agreement with a subsidiary of Chesapeake Energy Corporation CHK to acquire Oklahoma assets for $470 million from the latter.

The asset to be purchased includes about 42,000 net acres in the Anadarko Basin STACK play. The acquisition will expand Newfield’s footprint in the play to 265,000 net acres. Currently, the asset produces a total of 3,800 barrels of oil equivalent per day. The yield from this asset is projected to more than double by the end of 2016 as the recently drilled wells are completed. The acquirer has also recognized over 1,000 potential drilling locations on the aforesaid acreage.

Subject to customary adjustments, the deal is expected to close in the second quarter of 2016. The transaction, which will have an effective date of Apr 1, 2016, will be funded by company with cash on hand.

Per Chesapeake's first-quarter earnings report, the latest sale is part of its $1.2 billion worth of asset divestitures that have been agreed to or closed so far in 2016. The company plans to sell more assets this year.

Newfield Exploration’s exposure to emerging resource plays, along with its shift of focus from natural gas into liquids, will help it to grow in the Exploration and Production space.

Newfield Exploration’s STACK and SCCOP plays in the Anadarko basin are important parts of its portfolio. Production in STACK and SCCOP plays are expected to increase more than 20% in 2016 from the 2015 levels. Currently, the company intends to operate about 4–6 rigs in the Anadarko Basin and drill about 80 wells in 2016. Newfield Exploration has a net acreage of over 315,000 in the basin.

Newfield carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). Some better-ranked stocks in the oil and gas sector include Transocean Partners LLC RIGP and Braskem S.A. BAK. All these sport a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).

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