As the second growth cycle of the resource-play era accelerates, equity analysts are taking note of small-cap producers that are applying best practices from the big shale plays to other areas. In several cases they have initiated coverage.

Analysts strongly favor producers of every size that have either proximity to refining and export outlets, or at least, firm and secure transportation. Differentials in areas that do not have adequate takeaway are starting to hit bottom lines. Most broadly, the emphasis is on leadership teams that can execute. In that, equity analysts sound not unlike managers in private equity.

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