Why EPL Oil & Gas (EPL) Is Soaring Today

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- EPL Oil & Gas  (EPL) was soaring 29.82% to $37.79 at 10:58 a.m. on Wednesday after news broke that Energy XXI  (EXXI) would purchase the company for total consideration of $2.3 billion.

The deal would create the publicly-owned independent oil producer on the Gulf of Mexico shelf, according to the companies' statement. Ben Marchive, Energy XXI Executive Vice President of Exploration and Production, said in a statement that the combined company would own and operate 10 oil fields on the shelf with cumulative production each exceeding 80 million barrels of oil.

"EPL's assets and operations closely resemble our own, predominantly oil, with some of the highest margins in the industry and extraordinary opportunities for reserves and production growth through development and exploration activities," Energy XXI Chairman and CEO John Schiller said in the statement. "Energy XXI will be the only publicly traded pure play on the Gulf of Mexico shelf, with the highest concentration of large, mature oil fields ever owned by a single shelf operator. With a history of increasing acquired reserves, we have proven the adage that big oil fields get bigger, and we are excited at the prospect of continuing that trend with the addition of EPL's properties."

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TheStreet Ratings team rates EPL OIL & GAS INC as a "buy" with a ratings score of B-. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:

"We rate EPL OIL & GAS INC (EPL) a BUY. This is driven by some important positives, which we believe should have a greater impact than any weaknesses, and should give investors a better performance opportunity than most stocks we cover. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, reasonable valuation levels, good cash flow from operations, increase in stock price during the past year and expanding profit margins. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income."

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