Apache's Accelerated Drilling Program Fuels Record Second-Quarter Production

HOUSTON, Aug. 2, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Apache Corporation (NYSE, Nasdaq: APA) said today that accelerating worldwide drilling activity fueled record second-quarter 2012 production of 774,000 barrels of oil equivalent (boe) per day.

Apache's second-quarter earnings totaled $337 million, or 86 cents per diluted share, reflecting the impact of a $480 million non-cash, after-tax reduction in the carrying value of its oil and gas properties in Canada stemming from lower North American natural gas prices. For the same period last year, Apache reported earnings of $1.24 billion, or $3.17 per diluted share.

Apache's adjusted earnings*, which exclude certain items that impact the comparability of operating results, totaled $821 million or $2.07 per diluted common share in the second quarter, as the impact of higher production was offset in part by lower oil and gas prices. In the prior-year period, Apache reported adjusted earnings of $1.26 billion or $3.22 per share. Cash from operations before changes in operating assets and liabilities* totaled $2.38 billion in the second quarter, down from $2.64 billion in the prior-year period.

"As we announced at our Investor Day presentation in June, Apache has assembled an inventory of 67,000 drillable locations in liquids-rich onshore U.S. plays, and now is the time to drill wells," said G. Steven Farris, chairman and chief executive officer. "Rigs are running – 36 in the Permian Basin, up from 26 at the end of 2011, and 24 in the Anadarko Basin, up from seven at year-end. The impact of our accelerated drilling program is beginning to take hold."

In the Permian Basin, production was up quarter-over-quarter by 5 percent, putting Apache on track to deliver its long-term Permian production growth target of 13 percent per year. In the Anadarko Basin, production increased 47 percent sequentially, including volumes from the Cordillera Energy Partners III acquisition that closed April 30. Apache's Anadarko Basin production is on target to achieve the goal of growing by 24 percent per year through 2016.

"Apache is gaining momentum, and we project rising production throughout the second half," Farris said.

Apache anticipates achieving its long-term global growth forecast of 6 to 9 percent in 2012 from 2011, net of 11,000 boe per day from assets in Canada and East Texas sold in the second half of 2011.  Second-quarter 2012 volumes were hampered by unanticipated downtime totaling approximately 16,000 boe per day.

Although North Sea production was flat from the first quarter to the second, positive drilling results in the Bacchus and Beryl fields are projected to increase production there in the second half of 2012.

In Australia, a new development well drilled in the Pyrenees Field offshore Western Australia commenced production on July 14; the well currently is producing 11,000 barrels of oil per day (3,135 barrels per day net to Apache).

Consistent with Apache's active drilling program, the company was the apparent high bidder on 90 blocks in the Bureau of Ocean Energy and Management's recent lease sale in the Gulf of Mexico. Apache is currently operating six rigs in the Gulf.

Commodity markets continued to be marked by volatility during the second quarter. Worldwide, Apache received an average of $97.66 per barrel of oil, down from $106.31 per barrel in the prior-year period. Apache benefitted from higher prices realized on Dated Brent crude produced in the company's Australia, North Sea and Egypt regions, and on sweet crude from the Gulf of Mexico regions. Apache received these premium prices on approximately 73 percent of crude oil production.

While North American natural gas price realizations fell 35 percent from the prior-year period to $3.17 per thousand cubic feet (Mcf), Apache's international regions saw prices rise 8 percent to $4.08 per Mcf. International gas production rose 100 million cubic feet per day from the prior-year period and represented 37 percent of Apache's total gas volumes.

*Adjusted earnings and cash from operations before changes in operating assets and liabilities are non-GAAP measures. Please see reconciliations below. For supplemental and non-GAAP information, please go to http://www.apachecorp.com/financialinfo.

Apache to webcast conference call
Apache Corporation will conduct its second-quarter 2012 results at 1 p.m. Central time on Thursday, August 2. The conference call will be webcast from Apache's website, www.apachecorp.com. The webcast replay will be archived on Apache's website. The conference call will be available for delayed playback by telephone for one week beginning at approximately 4 p.m. on August 2. To access the telephone playback, dial 855-859-2056 or 404-537-3406 for international calls. The conference access code is 42313772.

About Apache
Apache Corporation is an oil and gas exploration and production company with operations in the United States, Canada, Egypt, the United Kingdom North Sea, Australia and Argentina. Apache posts announcements, operational updates, investor information and copies of all press releases on its website, www.apachecorp.com.