Rex Energy Corporation (NASDAQ:REXX) announced its third quarter 2015 operational and financial results.

Commenting on the quarter, Tom Stabley, Rex Energy’s President and CEO, said, “We have continued to improve our drilling operations by lowering costs and increasing work efficiencies. The average well cost for a 5,000 foot lateral in Butler is now down to $5.2 million. Our average drilling rate for the last eight wells was 595 feet per day, as compared to a rate of 402 feet per day for the first nine wells in 2015, an improvement of 48%. With the exceptional performance of our operations team combined with well performance, and the nature of our rock in Butler County, we have been able to increase our overall reserves profile. Cost containment and operational efficiencies are positioning us to weather the low commodity price environment.”

Third Quarter Financial Results

Operating revenue from continuing operations for the three and nine months ended September 30, 2015 was $37.6 million and $137.5 million, respectively, which represents a decrease of 49% and 40% from the same periods in 2014, respectively. Commodity revenues, including settlements from derivatives, were $52.6 million and $176.6 million for the three and nine months ended September 30, 2015, a decrease of 31% and 21% respectively from the comparable periods in 2014. Commodity revenues from oil and natural gas liquids (NGLs), including settlements from derivatives, represented 48% of total commodity revenues for the three months ended September 30, 2015.

Including the effects of cash settled basis hedges, the company’s basis differential for its Appalachian Basin assets averaged approximately ($0.82) off the average Henry Hub price of $2.77 for the three months ended September 30, 2015.

LOE from continuing operations was $30.6 million, or $1.71 per Mcfe for the quarter. For the nine months ended September 30, 2015, LOE was approximately $90.3 million, or $1.66 per Mcfe. Cash general and administrative (“G&A”) expenses from continuing operations, a non-GAAP measure, were $5.5 million for the third quarter of 2015, a 39% decrease on a per unit basis as compared to the same period in 2014. For the nine months endedSeptember 30, 2015, cash G&A expenses from continuing operations were $18.7 million, a 43% decrease on per unit basis as compared to the same period in 2014.

The company incurred a non-cash impairment charge of approximately $139.8 million during the third quarter of 2015. The reduction in carrying value, which was primarily focused in the company’s Warrior North assets in Carroll County, Ohio and its conventional oil assets in the Illinois Basin, is attributable to the continued depression of current and estimated future commodity prices.

Net loss attributable to common shareholders for the three months ended September 30, 2015 was $97.1 million, or $1.80 per basic share. Net loss attributable to common shareholders for the nine months ended September 30, 2015 was $272.5 million, or $5.07 per basic share. Adjusted net loss, a non-GAAP measure, for the three months ended September 30, 2015 was $13.9 million, or $0.26 per share. Adjusted net loss for the nine months ended September 30, 2015 was $31.7 million, or $0.59 per share.

EBITDAX from continuing operations, a non-GAAP measure, was $16.4 million for the third quarter of 2015 and $68.2 million for the nine months endedSeptember 30, 2015.

Reconciliations of adjusted net income (loss) to GAAP net income (loss) from continuing operations before income taxes, EBITDAX to GAAP net income (loss) and cash G&A to GAAP G&A for the three months and nine months ended September 30, 2015, as well as a discussion of the uses of each measure, are presented in the appendix of this release.

Production and Price Realizations

Third quarter 2015 production volumes were 194.3 MMcfe/d, an increase of 15% over the third quarter of 2014, consisting of 116.6 MMcf/d of natural gas and 12.9 Mboe/d of oil, condensate and NGLs (including 4.6 Mboe/d of ethane). Oil, condensate and NGLs (including ethane) accounted for 40% of net production for the third quarter of 2015.

Including the effects of cash-settled derivatives, realized prices for the three months ended September 30, 2015 were $50.03 per barrel for oil and condensate, $2.57 per Mcf for natural gas, $16.99 per barrel for NGLs (C3+) and $7.33 per barrel for ethane. Before the effects of hedging, realized prices for the three months ended September 30, 2015 were $40.01 per barrel for oil and condensate, $1.74 per Mcf for natural gas, $10.17 per barrel for NGLs (C3+) and $7.22 per barrel for ethane.

Including the effects of cash-settled derivatives, realized prices for the nine months ended September 30, 2015 were $52.92 per barrel for oil and condensate, $2.67 per Mcf for natural gas, $20.25 per barrel for NGLs (C3+) and $7.01 per barrel for ethane. Before the effects of hedging, realized prices for the nine months ended September 30, 2015 were $43.04 per barrel for oil and condensate, $1.99 per Mcf for natural gas, $15.83 per barrel for NGLs (C3+) and $6.82 per barrel for ethane.

Third Quarter 2015 Capital Investments

For the third quarter of 2015, the company made operational capital investments of approximately $37.1 million, of which $33.5 million was used to fund Marcellus and Ohio Utica operations and $3.6 million was used to fund conventional drilling, water flood enhancement and facility upgrades in theIllinois Basin. The Marcellus and Ohio Utica capital investment funded the drilling of 10.0 gross (6.9 net) wells, fracture stimulation of 11.0 gross (5.6 net) wells, placing nine gross (3.8 net) wells into sales and other projects related to drilling and completing wells in the Appalachian Basin.

Investments for leasing and property acquisition were $5.0 million and capitalized interest was $2.0 million for the third quarter of 2015.

Operational Update

Appalachian Basin – Butler Operated Area

In the Butler Operated Area, the company drilled 9.0 gross (5.9 net) wells in the third quarter of 2015, with 10.0 gross (4.6 net) wells fracture stimulated and eight gross (2.8 net) wells placed into sales. The company had 11.0 gross (7.3 net) wells drilled and awaiting completion as of September 30, 2015.

Appalachian Basin – Moraine East Area

In the Moraine East Area, the company has completed drilling the four-well Fleeger 2 pad. The four wells were drilled to an average lateral length of approximately 6,500 feet, are expected to be completed in the fourth quarter of 2015 and placed into sales in late 2015 or early 2016, as the necessary infrastructure comes into service.

Appalachian Basin – Western Lawrence Utica

In the Western Lawrence Utica, the company has placed into sales the Patterson 2H well, which was drilled to a lateral length of approximately 6,700 feet and completed in 45 stages with average sand concentrations of 2,365 pounds per foot. The well produced at a 24-hour sales rate of 11.4 MMcfe/d.

Liquidity Update

As of September 30, 2015, the company had approximately $3.2 million of cash and $69.0 million of its $350.0 million borrowing base outstanding under its senior secured credit facility. During the third quarter of 2015, the company completed the sale of Keystone Clearwater Solutions and received reimbursement for previous pipeline expenditures in Moraine East for combined net proceeds of $71.1 million.

Fourth Quarter and Full Year 2015 Guidance

Rex Energy is providing its guidance for the fourth quarter and maintaining its full year 2015 guidance ($ in millions). Fourth quarter production is expected to be down approximately 4% at the midpoint of guidance due to the Bluestone processing facility being shut down for six days during the quarter to allow for the commissioning of the Bluestone III processing facility and the shut-in of the six-well Grunder pad in order for the company to drill the Grunder North 6H from the existing pad. The cumulative effect of these two factors is expected to impact production by approximately 8.0 MMcfe/d. Adjusting for these two factors at the midpoint of the company’s guidance, estimated production during the quarter would be flat as compared to the third quarter of 2015.

In addition, the company is increasing its full year 2015 operational capital expenditure budget to approximately $160 million. The increase in the budget is due to the company’s decision to drill three additional wells and to add three wells to its completion schedule to take advantage of increased operational efficiencies and accelerate the HBP program. (Original Source)

Shares of Rex Energy closed today at $2.47, up $0.01 or 0.41%. REXX has a 1-year high of $9.40 and a 1-year low of $1.85. The stock’s 50-day moving average is $2.46 and its 200-day moving average is $3.59.

On the ratings front, Rex Energy has been the subject of a number of recent research reports. In a report issued on August 17, Imperial analyst Kim Pacanovsky reiterated a Buy rating on REXX, with a price target of $4.25, which implies an upside of 72.1% from current levels. Separately, on July 30, Northland Securities’ Reed Anderson reiterated a Buy rating on the stock and has a price target of $5.

According to TipRanks.com, which ranks over 7,500 financial analysts and bloggers to gauge the performance of their past recommendations, Kim Pacanovsky and Reed Anderson have a total average return of -36.2% and 0.2% respectively. Pacanovsky has a success rate of 22.2% and is ranked #3824 out of 3829 analysts, while Anderson has a success rate of 44.2% and is ranked #2434.

Rex Energy Corp is an independent energy company. The Company is engaged in acquisition, production, exploration and development of oil and gas with properties concentrated in the Appalachian and Illinois regions.