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Carrizo Continues to Focus on Texas Oil Production

Carrizo Oil & Gas Inc. projects year-over-year third quarter crude oil production will once again increase, this time to 23,573 b/d, an 18% increase driven mainly by its core assets in South Texas' Eagle Ford Shale.

Carrizo's crude oil production has been on the rise for the last four years or so. It said late Thursday that it would increase its full-year crude guidance from 22,350-22,500 to 22,750-22,850 b/d, marking the third time since the beginning of the year that it has increased its projections for oil production. Overall, Carrizo expects third quarter production to come in at 35,948 boe/d, a 7% increase from the year ago period that would slightly exceed its previous guidance.

At the beginning of the year, Carrizo said it would focus primarily on the Eagle Ford; reduce its activity in Colorado's Niobrara formation; continue curtailing Marcellus Shale production in Pennsylvania, and idle its Utica Shale drilling program in Ohio (see Shale Daily, Feb. 24). The company said its Eagle Ford assets could remain profitable at $44/bbl throughout the year even though falling commodity prices forced it to retreat there. Carrizo has said that plans to build a backlog of well completions, combined with the reduction in activity outside Texas, would likely keep sequential production volumes flat throughout the year.

Although its third quarter production estimate exceeds guidance, it would still be lower than the 36,118 boe/d it produced in the second quarter. Carrizo said it expects to finish the year producing 56-57 MMcf/d of natural gas and 3,500-3,600 b/d of natural gas liquids.

The company said it now has hedges covering about 13,500 b/d of 2016 crude oil production, consisting of 8,000 b/d of swaps at an average price of $60.03/bbl and 5,492 b/d of collars with an average floor price of $50.97/bbl. Carrizo also announced a public offering of 5.5 million shares of its common stock that it expects will raise $211.8 million. Those proceeds, the company said, would go toward repaying debt, administrative costs and possible future acquisitions "with a primary focus in the Permian Basin."

The latter would fall in line with a farm-out agreement the company announced in May that provided it rights to about 2,800 net acres in West Texas' Delaware Basin (see Shale Daily, May 12). The company had planned to deploy a rig there in the third quarter for work on three test wells that it hopes to complete by year's end. That deal increased the company's position in the Delaware to 26,000 net acres.

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