Devon Energy Swings to 1Q Loss on Large Asset Write-Down

Devon Energy Corp. swung to a substantial first-quarter loss as the oil and gas exploration company recorded a $1.9 billion write-down stemming from lower oil and natural-gas liquids prices.

Devon and many other energy companies have turned their focus to more-profitable oil projects as natural-gas prices remain low. Devon also had added major international investors in its shale plays last year, such as its $1.4 billion joint-venture deal with Japanese trading house Sumitomo Corp. and a $2.2 billion venture with Chinese oil major Sinopec International Petroleum Exploration & Production Corp.

The company quarterly average daily oil production fell 1%. Overall daily production was down 2.1%.

Average realized prices without hedges fell 3.8% overall, amid steep declines in prices for natural-gas liquids and oil.

Devon reported a loss of $1.34 billion, or $3.34 a share, compared with a year-earlier profit of $393 million, or 97 cents a share. Adjusting for the write-down and other items, the company posted a profit of 66 cents a share.

Revenue shrank 21% to $1.97 billion.

Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters most-recently projected adjusted earnings of 55 cents a share on revenue of $2.35 billion.

Copyright (c) 2012 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.

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