Diamondback Energy Vows to Hold Oil Output Flat Even as Prices Soar

“I think this industry has tried a market share war with OPEC before and it didn’t work out,” Diamondback Energy CFO Kaes Van’t Hof said. “So why don’t we let OPEC bring back their spare capacity and us stay flat?”

Liz Hampton, Reuters

U.S. shale oil producer Diamondback Energy Inc. this week vowed to hold its crude output flat next year, even as prices have climbed to levels not seen since 2014.

The Midland, Texas-based company is among the first shale independents to report its third-quarter results. Investors are closely watching to see if publicly traded firms will boost production as oil prices hover near $84/bbl, especially with privately traded oil companies adding rigs.

On Nov. 2, Diamondback said it has transitioned from a company that consumes capital to one that is focused on shareholder returns following calls from investors to stop production growth at all costs. The company has committed to returning 50% of its free cash flow to investors starting this quarter and a $2 billion share buyback as part of that commitment.

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