Whiting Petroleum misses Wall Street estimates in second quarter

HOUSTON (Reuters) - Whiting Petroleum Corp WLL.N on Tuesday reported a second-quarter adjusted profit that missed Wall Street expectations despite higher oil prices and production.

U.S. shale operators have increased output across the nation to record levels as U.S. oil prices have climbed toward $70 per barrel.

The Denver-based oil producer reported adjusted net of $57.2 million, or 62 cents per share, as both crude prices and its oil production rose. Wall Street had expected the company to report adjusted profit of 65 cents per share.

One of the largest oil producers in North Dakota’s Bakken shale boosted its production 12 percent to an average of 126,180 barrels of oil equivalent per day (boepd), near the high end of its guidance.

Its output totaled 11.5 million boepd for the quarter. The company drilled 33 wells in the Williston Basin in North Dakota, where its output averaged more than 103,000 boepd. It spent $203 million in capital expenditures in the quarter.

Whiting’s operating revenue rose to $526.4 million in the second quarter, compared with $311.5 million year-on-year. Its average sales price rose to $67.91 per barrel of oil, up from $48.32 per barrel in the second quarter of 2017.

The company during the quarter closed a $130 million purchase of almost 55,000 acres (22,258 hectares) of properties in the Williston Basin that currently produce 1,290 boepd.

The acquisition “fits well with our current core acreage position in the western Williston Basin,” Whiting Chief Executive Bradley Holly said in a statement.

Reporting by Collin Eaton; editing by Jonathan Oatis and Marguerita Choy