Denbury Resources

(DNR) - Get Report

reported earnings per share of 18 cents for the fourth quarter, 5 cents better than Wall Street estimates.

The oil and gas exploration company on Wednesday reported fourth-quarter net income of $43.8 million, 59% lower than the same quarter in 2007.

Shares were recently trading at $12.57, up 28 cents or 2.3%.

Full-year earnings were $388.4 million, or $1.59 per share, 53% higher than 2007 net income of $253.1 million, or $1.05 per share.

The company said the higher net income for the year was principally attributable to higher oil prices, and to a lesser degree record-high annual production levels, partially offset by higher operating costs and a $30.6 million charge in the third quarter of 2008 relating to the cancellation of the Conroe Field acquisition.

The Plano, Texas-based company said there were two significant non-cash items in 2008: a net gain of $257.6 million ($159.7 million net of tax) associated with the company's fair value adjustments on its derivative contracts, and a writedown on Dec. 31 of $226 million ($140.1 million net of tax) incurred because of the drop in oil and natural gas prices during the latter part of 2008.

Denbury said the lower net income for the fourth quarter was a result of the steep decline in commodity prices during the last half of 2008.

This article was written by a staff member of TheStreet.com.