Crescent Point posts profit on higher output, oil prices

CALGARY, Alberta (Reuters) - Canadian oil and gas producer Crescent Point Energy Corp on Thursday posted a second-quarter profit, compared with a year-earlier loss, helped by higher realized oil prices and an increase in production.

The oil and gas producer said total average production rose to 175,615 barrels of oil equivalent per day (boepd) in the three months ended June 30, from 167,218 boepd a year earlier.

Crescent Point also raised its 2017 average production guidance to 174,500 boepd from 172,000 boepd.

Operating expenses rose 18 percent to C$12.85 per boe. Chief Executive Scott Saxberg said that was due to more activity than expected during the spring break-up period, when companies on the Canadian Prairies are often forced to stop moving heavy equipment due to thawing of frozen roads.

“We were able to do more well start-ups than expected, so that added a bit more capital, Saxberg said in a phone interview. “We don’t see our costs rising, they are staying in the C$12 range.”

Cash flow, a measure of the company’s ability to fund new drilling and acquisitions, fell to C$415.9 million ($334.30 million) from C$427.5 million.

Crescent Point said it does not anticipate the need to change its capital program, although lower oil prices have forced some companies, including U.S. rival Anadarko Petroleum Corp, to cut their 2017 capital budgets.

Saxberg said Crescent Point had started the year with a more conservative 2017 budget than many U.S. rivals, which helped it weather depressed crude prices.

The company’s net income was C$83.6 million, or 15 Canadian cents per share, in the second quarter, compared with a loss of C$226.1 million, or 45 Canadian cents per share, in the year-earlier period.

Crescent Point’s core operations are in southwest Saskatchewan and the Williston and Uinta basins in the United States.

The company’s shares were last up 5.3 percent on the Toronto Stock Exchange at C$10.32.

Additional reporting by Anirban Paul in Bengaluru; Editing by Anil D’Silva and Paul Simao