W&T Offshore: Good Quarter Even With Hurricanes (WTI)

November 4, 2008 by Douglas A. McIntyre

Offshore_oil_rigBefore the market opened this morning W&T Offshore (NYSE:WTI) reported third quarter EPS of $1.03 on revenue of $290 million. Analysts had been expecting EPS of $0.82 on revenue of $276 million. Backing out an unrealized gain on derivatives, EPS amounted to $0.79 for the quarter, compared with $0.53 for the same period a year ago.

Hurricanes Gustav and Ike reduced production to just 52% of pre-stormlevels. The company’s good results are attributed to higher realizedprices for both crude and natural gas, $14.57/thousand cubic feetequivalent vs. $8.83/thousand cubic feet equivalent a year ago.

Countering the good news is W&T’s revised guidance. Production inthe third quarter barely topped the company’s revised guidance afterthe hurricanes. Fourth quarter guidance has been revised downward bynearly 20% from that modest figure. Costs have been revised upward, ashave expenses for gathering, transportation, and production taxes.

Unless prices take a northward turn in the next couple of months,W&T could have difficulty meeting current analysts’ estimates ofEPS and revenues for the fourth quarter, which have already beenlowered.

The stock closed at $17.31 yesterday, but gained a little over 1% inafter-hours trading and shares are up almost 9% at $18.94 today after45 minutes of trading.

Paul Ausick
November 4, 2008