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SAN DIEGO (

TheStreet

) --

Royale Energy

(ROYL)

shares rallied sharply higher Friday on heavy volume, after the company announced it had discovered a "significant" new natural gas field.

Royale Energy on late Thursday said it has set pipe on what it believes to be a significant discovery of a new natural gas field. "This new field discovery provides Royale Energy with significant new development opportunities to increase its production and natural gas reserves," the company said in a statement.

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Shares of Royale Energy were jumping by 40 cents, or 12.5%, to $3.61, building on Thursday's 48% surge. Earlier in the session, the stock touched an intraday high of $3.92. More than 4.1 million shares changed hands by noon EDT Friday, compared to the stock's 50-day average daily volume of 160,000, according to the

Nasdaq

.

Royale Energy has a 5.5 million-share float with a short interest float of 7.8% as of Sept. 25, according to Yahoo! Finance. More than 43% of the company's shares are held by insiders with another 9% owned by institutions.

Read more about today's high-volume stocks in earlier "Pump Up the Volume" posts

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-- Written by Robert Holmes in New York

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