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Enhanced Completions Boost Newfield, Expects 1Q Production to Exceed Guidance

Newfield Exploration Co. said it expects 1Q2017 production will likely exceed the high end of its guidance for the quarter, thanks in large part to enhanced completions at 16 wells the company drilled recently in Oklahoma's stacked reservoirs.

In a statement Monday, the Woodlands, TX-based company said its Burgess well achieved a 24-hour flow rate of 2,931 boe/d, of which 69% was oil. The Burgess well -- drilled in Kingfisher County, OK, at the heart of Newfield's 300,000-plus net acre position in the STACK (Sooner Trend of the Anadarko Basin, mostly Canadian and Kingfisher counties) play -- also recorded a 20-day average rate of 2,492 boe/d, including 70% oil.

Newfield said that when the Burgess well is compared to other wells in the vicinity, it achieved record 24-hour oil production per 1,000 feet of gross perforated interval (GPI), recording a rate of 417 bbl per GPI. The well also had a record 20-day average oil production rate, at 361 bbl per GPI. The company said those rates are among the highest for oil production on a per 1,000-foot GPI basis among wells reported to the public in the STACK and SCOOP (South Central Oklahoma Oil Province) plays. The Burgess well was drilled with a 4,859-foot lateral.

CEO Lee Boothby said results from its enhanced completions were giving the company confidence for its near-term plans, as well as future productivity in the STACK.

"The year 2017 is critical for us," Boothby said. "We are rich in catalysts as we test development well densities, optimize our completions and explore exciting new stacked pay potential across our vast Anadarko Basin acreage position.

"STACK is the foundation for our future transition to a company that can sustainably grow its production by double-digits within cash flow...even if today's oil prices persist. We are off to a roaring start in 2017 and we look forward to updating our stockholders on the execution of our business plan as the year progresses."

Newfield expects domestic 1Q2017 production will average approximately 137,700 boe/d, slightly above its original guidance of 132,000-134,200 boe/d for the quarter.

Last February, Newfield updated production results for nine previously disclosed STACK wells and provided early production rates for another seven wells with enhanced completion designs. The company also said it planned to spend about $1 billion on capital expenditures in 2017, drilling 85-90 wells in the STACK and up to 50 wells in the SCOOP. It announced preparations to accelerate its drilling activity in the Anadarko Basin last November.

Newfield said five of the aforementioned wells now have 90 days of production history, averaging 1,215 boe/d, with 65% oil. That figure is more than 40% above the company's 1.1 million boe gross type curve when normalized to a 10,000-foot lateral length. Newfield said it was in the process of "gathering significant new data in 2017, and the results will ultimately be used to appropriately describe [our] development well type curve in STACK."

Newfield signed two separate agreements to sell nearly its entire Texas portfolio for $380 million last summer. The company sold its unconventional assets in the Eagle Ford Shale, as well as conventional natural gas assets in South and West Texas, in order to focus on the SCOOP and STACK plays. The deals closed last September.

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