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Statoil Receives Operatorship of Bajo del Toro Este License


Statoil ASA STO receives the operatorship of Bajo del Toro Este exploration license in the fifth bidding round of Argentina’s Gas y Petroleo del Neuquen’s (GyP).

The Bajo del Toro Este license lies to the west of Bajo del Toro license. Statoil holds a stake of 90% in the license, while the remaining 10% is held by GyP. The Bajo del Toro Este exploration license permit is located in the western part of Argentina and covers an area of more than 133 square kilometers (32,865 acres).

Statoil intends to complete one exploration well within the four-year exploration period, which begins in 2018.

In August 2017, Statoil and Argentina’s energy company, YPF, inked a preliminary agreement relating to joint exploration of the Vaca Muerta Formation in the Bajo del Toro block. The company intends to strengthen position in light oil via its holding in the outstanding unconventional resource play, the Vaca Muerta Formation.

The award is in line with Statoil’s long-term exploration strategy of delivering profitable, high-quality resources.

Statoil’s endeavor to improve recovery of resources in mature fields is commendable. The company has operations in all major hydrocarbon-producing regions of the world, with an emphasis on the Norwegian Continental Shelf (NCS). We believe that Statoil is well positioned to sustain steady production growth in the next few years on the back of a large resource base at NCS. This award will strengthen the company’s footprint in new regions.

Price Performance

Shares of the company have gained 14.3% compared with the industry’s rally of 9.1% in the last six months.

Zacks Rank

Statoil currently carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). Other prospective players in the energy sector include BP plc BP, ConocoPhillips COP and Northern Oil and Gas Inc NOG. All these stocks sport a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

A major exploration and production company, BP, delivered an average positive earnings surprise of 26.80% in the last four quarters.

ConocoPhillips, based in Houston, TX, is a major global exploration and production (E&P) company. It delivered an average positive earnings surprise of 152.34% in the last four quarters.

Northern Oil and Gas, based in Minnetonka, MN, is an independent energy company. The company delivered an average positive earnings surprise of 175.00% in the last four quarters.

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