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Enerplus' CEO Discusses Q2 2012 Results - Earnings Call Transcript

Stocks in this article: ERF

We've also seen a substantial increase in activity by our non-operated partners in this region. In addition, we have increased spending on infrastructure related to pipeline connecting our wells both to capture associated gas production and reduce the hauling of oil. Spending on our natural gas assets has been limited with the majority of activity occurring on our non-operated properties in the Marcellus in Northeastern Pennsylvania.

Operating cost were on-track with our forecast for the quarter of CAD$10.78 per BOE and G&A expenses were CAD$$2.81 per BOE including both cash and equity based compensation. Our funds flow during the quarter was CAD$$147 million, down 10% versus Q1 but ahead of analyst consensus of CAD$$131 million.

Higher oil production volumes during the quarter provided the additional support to our cash flows. We took three important steps during the quarter to manage our balance sheet. First, we issued C CAD$405 million of long term senior unsecured notes at approximately 4.4% coupon rate and the proceeds of this issue were used to reduce the borrowing under our bank credit facility.

Secondly, we implemented the stock dividend program which gives all of our shareholders the choice to receive their dividends as shares in Enerplus instead of cash. This replaces our DRIP, which was available only to Canadian shareholders.

As a result of opening the [STP] up to our entire shareholder base, we have seen early participation of about 17% of total dividends paid. This compares to around 11% for the first five months of 2012 under the old DRIP.

Thirdly, we reduced our monthly dividend from CAD$0.18 per share to CAD$0.09 per share.

As a result of these measures and our activity in the quarter, our debt for the 12-month trailing funds flow was two times and 68% of our CAD$1 billion line of credit was available to us at the end of the quarter. We also continue to increase our hedge positions for better funds flow.

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