Chesapeake Energy Shares Tumble After Company's Loss Widens, Unveils Drastic Capex Cuts

By Ciara LinnaneMarketWatch Pulse

Chesapake Energy Corp. shares tumbled 9% in premarket trade Wednesday, after the company's fourth-quarter loss widened and it unveiled further capex cuts and asset sales. The company said it had a net loss of $2.23 billion, or $3.36 a share, in the quarter, after earnings of $586 million, or 81 cents a share, in the year-earlier period. Its adjusted loss per share came to 16 cents, a penny less than the 17 cents-per-share FactSet consensus. Revenue declined to $2.65 billion from $5.69 billion a year ago, and matched the FactSet consensus. The company said it is planning to slash capex by 57% in 2016 to $1.3 to $1.8 billion. It expects production to be down 0% to 5%, once adjusted for asset sales. The company is targeting further asset sales of $500 million to $1.0 billion in 2016. "In light of the challenging commodity price environment, our focus for 2016 is to improve our liquidity, further reduce our cost structure and address our near-term debt maturities to strengthen our balance sheet," Chief Executive Doug Lawler said in a statement. Shares have fallen a stunning 89% in the last 12 months, while the S&P 500 has fallen 9%.

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