Continental Resources posts bigger-than-expected loss on oil crash

(Reuters) - U.S. shale producer Continental Resources Inc on Monday posted a bigger-than-expected second-quarter loss as the coronavirus crisis and related lockdowns pummeled demand for fuel and hammered prices.

The largest producer in North Dakota’s Bakken basin - the second-biggest U.S. shale field - had cut as much as 55% of its planned oil output in the June quarter as the oilfield was among the hardest hit by the price plunge.

Average daily production tumbled 38.8% to 202,815 barrels of oil equivalent (boe), while prices crashed 78.1% to $7.88 per boe, the company said.

The company estimates that the second quarter production deferral would help it generate an additional $90 million in cash flow from operations if U.S. oil fetched around $40 a barrel.

Continental said it now expects full-year oil production to range between 155,000 barrels per day (bpd) and 165,000 bpd, about 20% lower than its original forecast at its midpoint.

The company also said it was on track to achieve its reduced 2020 capital expenditure guidance of $1.2 billion or lower.

Net loss attributable to the company was $239.3 million, or 66 cents per share, for the second quarter ended June 30, compared with a profit of $236.6 million, or 63 cents per share, a year earlier.

Excluding items, Continental posted a loss of 71 cents per shares, while analysts had estimated a loss of 59 cents.

Revenue of $175.7 million also missed estimates of $250.27 million, according to Refinitiv IBES data.

Reporting by Arathy S Nair in Bengaluru; Editing by Shailesh Kuber