Southwestern Energy Credits Fayetteville Shale for Good 2013

Southwestern Energy Co. of Houston is calling its 2013 "outstanding" and credits its Fayetteville Shale developments for much of this success.

According to the company's fourth quarter earnings release, in 2013, Southwestern's gas wells in the shale generated 3 trillion cubic feet of gas. It leases almost 1 million acres of land in the shale area.

"Our Fayetteville Shale division had one of its best years ever in 2013, not only by surpassing the milestone of 3 Tcf of cumulative gross operated production, but also by achieving our highest average initial production rate per well at the lowest cost per well since we began drilling in the Fayetteville in 2004," CEO Steve Mueller said in the release.

On Dec. 31, Southwestern was generating 2.3 billion cubic feet of gas per day through 1,947 miles of pipeline in the Fayetteville Shale. Its next biggest project, the Marcellus Shale, was gathering 366 million cubic feet per day from 90 miles of lines. Of its $2.1 billion 2013 exploration budget, the company invested $907 million in Fayetteville Shale developments. The company intends to invest around $900 million in the Fayetteville Shale this year.

For the company's fourth quarter, net income totaled $188 million, or 54 cents per diluted share, compared to $156 million, or 45 cents per diluted share, in the same quarter of 2012.

Southwestern had revenue of $907 million in the quarter, up from $777 million in the same quarter of 2012.

For the company's full year, income was $703 million, compared to $486 million in 2012. Revenue in 2013 was $3.37 billion, up from $2.72 billion in 2012.