BUZZ-Encana Corp: BMO Capital Markets downgrades stock, cuts PT

Tue Dec 22, 2015 11:08am EST
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** Canadian oil and natural gas producer's U.S.-listed shares down about 4 pct at $4.71; touch record low of $4.66 earlier

** Toronto-listed shares down about 4 pct at C$6.60

** BMO Capital Markets downgrades stock to "market perform" from "outperform"; cuts PT to $8 from $10

** "Company needs materially higher commodity prices to internally fund its shift to liquids and deleverage its balance sheet," BMO Capital Markets analysts write

** "We expect selling the remaining assets at prices high enough to improve the balance sheet will be difficult in the current commodity price environment," the analysts write

** Encana on Monday delayed closing the sale of its Denver Julesburg basin assets in Colorado for about $900 mln to Q2 2016 from Q4 2015

** 14 of 26 brokerages covering the stock rate it "buy" or higher, 10 "hold" and 2 "sell"; median PT is $8.75

** Up to Monday's close, the U.S.-listed stock had lost about two-thirds of its value this year