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PDC Energy revises full-year output, capital budget

Company posted a net income of $68.5 million in the second quarter

US independent PDC Energy has increased its production range for the year and lowered its capital budget citing greater operational drilling efficiencies in the second quarter.

PDC grew its total production by 32% when compared to the year-ago period to about 12.4 million barrels of oil equivalent, or about 136,500 boped. The company decided to increase its full-year production range by one million barrels to between 48 million to 50 million boe.

"Throughout the second quarter, our operating teams continued to deliver improved drilling and completion efficiencies while building on the momentum created earlier in the year," chief executive Bart Brookman said.

"The combination of lowering our full-year capital investment guidance while increasing our full-year production guidance enables PDC to generate in excess of $150 million of free cash flow in the second half of 2019."

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Capital investment is set to decrease to a range of $810 million to $840 million, a $30 million difference from the prior upper target of $870 million as it anticipates limited completion activity in the fourth quarter.

The company is a core operator in the Wattenberg field in the state of Colorado where it holds 96,000 net acres. It also operates in the Delaware sub-basin of the prolific Permian shale play with 36,000 net acres in Reeves and Culberson counties.

PDC more recently sold off 6500 net acres in the Delaware in a $35 million deal, as it has seen drill times in the play average 23 days from spud to rig release, an 11-day improvement year-over-year.

In September, PDC expects to drop a rig in the Wattenberg for two in total but still complete up to 125 wells. The company is already running two rigs in the Delaware, and recently released a completion crew as it anticipates resuming completions in 2020.

PDC reported a net income of $68.5 million in the second quarter, compared to a $160.3 million net loss in the same period of 2018.

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