JP Morgan reiterates 'neutral' rating on Enquest, drops target price
(ShareCast News) - James Thompson, a European oil and gas analyst at JP Morgan, said on Friday that while the extended commissioning of EnQuest's Kraken project and resulting underwhelming performance thereof, were "clearly central" to the debate, JP Morgan was somewhat reassured given that commissioning phase issues were historically easier to rectify than facility or reservoir related problems.
EnQuest had said its first 500,000 barrel cargo was ready to load imminently after stabilizing production rates at approximately 30 thousand barrel of oil equivalents per day (kboepd) across its six producing wells, quelling Thompson's reservoir related concerns.
Over the half, EnQuest increased net debt 7% to $1.92bn, but the group managed to drop its first half operating costs 25% to $136m at the same as reducing its CapEx 22% to $205m, setting its full year CapEx projection between $375m to $400m. Because of this, JP Morgan said it expected net debt to move down in line with the improved production guidance to around $1.85bn.
The investment bank then reiterated its 'neutral' recommendation on the North Sea-focused group, but did drop its target price from 50p to 41p.
As of 1450 BST, EnQuest shares had dropped 4.37% to 26.25p.