March 28, 2012 / 10:44 AM / in 6 years

UPDATE 2-Crocotta Energy FFO up, cuts spending on gas projects

* Q4 production up 150 pct at 5,771 boe/d

* Q4 sales up 180 pct at C$20.4 mln

March 28 (Reuters) - Crocotta Energy Inc reported a nearly three-fold jump in funds from operations in the fourth quarter, but said it will cut capital budget for gas projects as prices for the fuel continue to weaken.

The company said it now expects to spend C$86.8 million this year, marginally lower than the C$87 million it earlier forecast in February. In 2011, the company’s capital expenditure was C$94.8 million.

Crocotta said it plans to focus on the emerging Cardium oil play at Edson to increase the percentage of its oil production, it said in a statement.

For the October-December quarter, the oil and natural gas company’s funds from operations (FFO) rose to C$12.1 million ($12.19 million), or 14 Canadian cents a share, from C$4.2 million, or 6 Canadian cents a share, a year ago.

Production jumped 150 percent to 5,771 barrels of oil equivalent per day (boe/d).

The company, however, posted a net loss of C$7.1 million, or 9 Canadian cents a share, compared with a profit of C$655,000, or 1 Canadian cent a share, a year ago.

Oil and natural gas sales rose 180 percent to C$20.4 million.

More than two-third’s of Crocotta’s production was tilted toward natural gas.

Natural gas prices fell as much 17 percent to average $3.54 per million British thermal unit in the October-December quarter.

Shares of the company closed at C$2.87 on Tuesday on the Toronto Stock Exchange.

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