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3 Opportunities in Booming South Texas

http://www.fool.com/investing/general/2013/03/29/3-opportunities-in-booming-south-texas.aspx

Aimee Duffy
March 29, 2013

Earlier this week, the Texas Railroad Commission announced that its preliminary numbers for oil production in the Eagle Ford Shale are outstanding. Production climbed 50% from 2011 to 2012, averaging 373,303 barrels per day. That growth is significant, and provides investors with some pretty compelling opportunities, so let's take a closer look at what's going on in southeastern Texas.

Eagle eye
The Eagle Ford shale seems to have come out of nowhere. In 2008, oil production in the region was a scant 358 barrels per day -- but take a look at what's happened since then:

Source: Texas Railroad Commission

You can see that the biggest production increase in the short four year history of the play came last year. Keep in mind that the slight uptick at the end of the graph is a mere month's worth of production -- and even that increased by more than 12,000 bpd.

What's the story here?
The Eagle Ford Shale is a geologic wonder that stretches from the southern border of Texas up through to around Austin.

Source: Energy Information Association

The shale's pay zone is thicker than most U.S. plays, with a higher percentage of carbonate material. On top of that, the distinct banding pattern of the Eagle Ford allows producers to target specific commodities for production. In the picture above, the green band is the oil region, the yellow band is for natural gas liquids, and the pink band is for dry gas.

Three winners
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