Devon Energy Plans To Divest $1B Assets; Profit Beats


May 2 (Reuters) - U.S. oil producer Devon Energy Corp said it would divest about $1 billion of its assets, and also reported a quarterly profit that beat analysts' estimates.

The assets include certain portions of its Barnett shale properties focused around Johnson County, Texas.

"This divestiture program ... supports our capital program and places us firmly on track to achieve our production growth targets in 2017 and 2018," Chief Executive Dave Hager said in a statement.

Net earnings attributable to Devon was $565 million, or $1.07 per share, in the first quarter ended March 31, compared with a loss of $3.06 billion, or $6.44 per share, a year earlier.

The year-ago quarter included an asset impairment charge of $3.04 billion and restructuring and transaction costs of $247 million.

On an adjusted basis, Devon earned 41 cents per share, while analysts on average had expected 40 cents, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

The company said its total operating expenses nearly halved to $2.84 billion.

Devon, like other oil and gas companies, has been keeping a tight leash on costs since a slide in global crude oil prices started in mid-2014.

Revenue jumped 67 percent to $3.55 billion. However, total production, net of royalties, fell 17.8 percent to 563,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day.

Shares of the company rose 2.8 percent to $39.97 in after-hours trading on Tuesday.

(Reporting by Sruthi Shankar and John Benny in Bengaluru; Editing by Maju Samuel)


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