Speaking of catching up, I think this firm's fundamentals are finally catching up to the high expectations of those heady IPO days. Like exit-eyeing Encore Acquisition
In the interim, the reins have been passed from father Bill to son Fred, and strong growth has indeed materialized. Proved reserves are up from 204 billion cubic feet equivalent (Bcfe) of gas at year-end 2003 to 558 Bcfe at the end of 2007, a respectable 29% compound growth rate. Production has compounded even faster.
More relevant for potential investors today is the growth that lies ahead. Fellow Rockies drillers EnCana
The firm's Uinta basin play is poised to double production -- as with Ultra Petroleum
Bill Barrett has other unconventional resource plays generating strong rates of return today, but what about falling gas prices? Aren't they going to ruin the production party?
In the short to medium term, this should be the least of investors' worries, given Bill Barrett's policy of hedging 50%-70% of production. But we're all worriers these days, and shares of high-growth hedgers like Bill Barrett and SandRidge Energy
This is just a quick sketch, but Bill Barrett appears to merit further Foolish scrutiny.
Fool contributor Toby Shute doesn't have a position in any company mentioned, but he's pulling for several to outperform the market over in CAPS. His player profile is here. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.