July 31, 2012
Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over market movements, we do like to keep an eye on big changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.
What: Shares of oil and gas driller W&T Offshore (NYSE: WTI ) were getting pumped up today, climbing more than 15% after the company reported better-than-expected earnings.
So what: The energy producer topped estimates by $0.05 with $0.28 EPS, and appeared to stop its free fall from a high around $26 in February. Falling energy prices had caused analysts to scale back their projections, and the stock had taken a hit as a result. Revenue was down about 17% from year ago to $215.5 million while adjusted net income dropped 60% from last year, but that was still good enough to beat the Street.
Now what: With the rebound in natural gas prices recently and oil prices having fallen on macro fears, W&T looks like a good bet going forward. I'd expect analysts to bump up their current third-quarter estimates from just $0.19/share, and it doesn't hurt that as an offshore producer its crude sells at a premium. Last quarter, W&T's oil fetched a price of $106.04/barrel vs. just $93.29 for West Texas Intermediate.
News reports have also just come out that the company is considering up to $3 billion worth of acquisitions, saying there's a surprising number of assets on the auction block. With growth opportunities aplenty and oil likely to rebound, this company looks like it could move higher.
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