SOURCE: Paragon Financial Limited

Paragon Financial Limited

December 06, 2011 08:16 ET

Abraxas Petroleum and Chevron Corporation Ramp Up Domestic Operations

The Paragon Report Provides Equity Research on Abraxas Petroleum & Chevron Corporation

NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwire - Dec 6, 2011) - The recovery for oil and gas drilling operations in the Gulf of Mexico remains slow this year. Burdened by slow permitting and steep regulation, the number of active rigs in the Gulf is currently 37 percent less than before last year's Deepwater Horizon disaster, a study by Quest Offshore Resources shows. Recent measures taken by the Obama Administration look to boost activity in the Gulf region. However the Administration's plan falls far short of what the oil industry and its Congressional supporters demanded. The Paragon Report examines the outlook for companies in the Oil and Gas sector and provides equity research on Abraxas Petroleum Corporation (NASDAQ: AXAS) and Chevron Corporation (NYSE: CVX). Access to the full company reports can be found at:

Last month the Obama Administration announced its proposed five year plan for offshore drilling, calling for opening new areas in the Gulf of Mexico and Alaska but bars development along the East and West Coasts. "It will have an emphasis in the Gulf of Mexico," Interior Secretary Ken Salazar said. "We see robust oil and gas development in the Gulf of Mexico."

Besides the Gulf and the Alaska leases, the proposal includes a small portion in the eastern Gulf about 150 miles off the Florida coast. The rest of the eastern Gulf is off limits due to a congressional moratorium.

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Abraxas Petroleum has assets located on the onshore Gulf Coast. Abraxas said net income for the quarter ended September 30, 2011 was $20.1 million, or $0.22 per share, compared to net loss of $856,000, or $0.01 per share, for the same period in 2010. During the 3rd quarter, AXAS increased production 5% over the 2nd quarter.

Earlier this year Chevron announced a potentially large discovery in the deep waters of the Gulf of Mexico, confirming the region's high potential. Chevron had begun drilling the well in early 2010 before last year's Deepwater Horizon tragedy, which forced the company to stop the operation when the Obama administration invoked its moratorium on gulf drilling.

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