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Rex Energy to Cut Spending in Appalachia

Rex Energy Corp. plans to cut its capital expenditures significantly this year as it continues to explore options for repairing its balance sheet.

In an annual report filed late last week with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, the company said it has budgeted $78-83 million for its Appalachian operations this year, compared with $132.8 million in 2017. The company has sold various assets in recent years and today operates in Carroll County, OH, and Butler County, PA.  

“In the event our cash flows are materially less than anticipated and/or other sources of capital we historically have utilized are not available on acceptable terms, we may curtail our capital spending,” management said in the filing.

The company continues to face financial headwinds. It recently defaulted on a semi-annual interest payment on its senior notes and its stock was delisted from the Nasdaq last week. It’s also had trouble meeting its financial reporting deadlines, submitting its annual report late and failing to date to report fourth quarter results. The company is in talks with its lenders about strategic alternatives to strengthen its balance sheet, including the possibility of filing for bankruptcy to restructure.

Rex’s independent auditor said the company does not have sufficient liquidity to meet certain debt obligations, which raises “substantial doubt about the company’s ability to continue as a going concern.”

The company plans to drill seven gross (4.5 net) Marcellus Shale wells in Butler County this year and plans to complete another 11 gross (8.5 net) wells. It also expects to complete five net wells in Carroll County.

The company reported 205.3 MMcfe/d of production in the fourth quarter, consisting of 60.1% natural gas, 38% natural gas liquids and 1.9% condensate. That was just above guidance and the 195.3 MMcfe/d produced in 4Q2016. Year/year production decreased 5% to 184.5 MMcfe/d, primarily because of the sale of the Warrior South assets in Guernsey, Noble and Belmont counties, OH.

Rex said it brought in $205.3 million in revenues last year, compared with $139 million in 2016. The company reported a net loss of $64.2 million (minus $6.73/share) for the full year, compared with a net loss of $176.7 million (minus $13.73) in 2016.

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