Rice Energy Spending $1.5B in M-U, Leasing 15K Acres in 2017

Rice Energy turned in it’s 2016 update this week, along with a look at what’s coming in 2017. As for top line financial numbers, Rice lost about the same in 2016 as they did in 2015: A loss off $298 million in 2016 vs. a loss of $291 million in 2015. Although Rice owns and drills on a small acreage position in the Texas Barnett Shale, the vast majority of their focus continues to be in the Marcellus/Utica. The company plans to spend $1.5 billion in 2017, broken out as follows: $1.035 billion for drilling and completion activity in the Marcellus/Utica shale plays; $225 million for land purchases; and $315 million spent by Rice Midstream ($255 million for gas gathering and compression and $60 million on water services). With that money, Rice expects to drill 75 new wells and complete another 55 wells in the Marcellus in 2017. In the Utica, Rice plans to drill 20 new wells and complete 20 wells in 2017. Land acquisition will happen in three counties: Greene and Washington Counties (in PA), and Belmont County (in OH). How much will they pay, on average, to lease new acreage? We have an answer for that…

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