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QEP Resources (QEP) Q1 Loss Betters Estimates, Stock Up

On Apr 27, 2016, domestic energy explorer QEP Resources Inc. QEP reported narrower-than-expected loss for first-quarter 2016. Higher production especially from the Williston and Permian Basins aided the results. This was partially dampened by lower price realizations.

Following the first-quarter result announcement, the company rose more than 6% on the NYSE.

The company reported loss per share – excluding special items – of 53 cents, narrower than the Zacks Consensus Estimate of loss of 59 cents. However, the bottom line came in much wider than the year-ago-quarter adjusted loss of 5 cents.  

Quarterly revenues of $261.3 million decreased about 44.2% from first-quarter 2015 and failed to surpass the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $459 million.  

Volume Analysis

QEP Resources’ overall production during the first quarter was 82.7 billion cubic feet equivalent (Bcfe), reflecting a 10% improvement from the prior-year quarter. Notably, gas accounted for 52.5% of total production. A significant increase in production from the Williston and Permian Basins drove the upside.

Natural gas volumes improved 2% year over year to 43.4 Bcf, while liquid volumes improved significantly to 6,541.4 thousand barrels.  

Realized Prices

QEP Resources’ average realized natural gas price in the quarter was $2.46 per thousand cubic feet, down 25% from the year-ago quarter price of $3.29. Moreover, average oil price realization decreased nearly 39% to $35.64 per barrel. 

Overall net realized equivalent price averaged $3.68 per thousand cubic feet equivalent in the quarter, reflecting a 34% decline from the year-ago figure.

Operating Expense

Total operating expenses for the quarter flared up to $1,641 million from $566.2 million in the year-ago quarter.

Balance Sheet

As of Mar 31, 2016, QEP Resources had cash and cash equivalents of $616.4 million. The company’s long-term debt was $2,016.2 million, representing a debt-to-capitalization ratio of 38.8%. 

Guidance

QEP Resources slightly increased the lower limit of its 2016 production guidance range to 303–328 Bcfe from 300–328 Bcfe.

The projection for 2016 capital spending is affirmed at $450−$500 million.

Zacks Rank & Stocks to Consider

Currently, QEP Resources carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).

Some better-ranked players in the energy sector include PetroChina Co. Ltd. PTR, Vanguard Natural Resources, LLC VNR and Braskem S.A. BAK. Each of these stocks sports a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).

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PETROCHINA ADR (PTR): Free Stock Analysis Report
 
BRASKEM SA (BAK): Free Stock Analysis Report
 
QEP RESOURCES (QEP): Free Stock Analysis Report
 
VANGUARD NATURL (VNR): Free Stock Analysis Report
 
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