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Upstream operator, Abraxas Petroleum Corp (AXAS - Snapshot Report) has provided a glimpse of its 2014 capital expenditure plan. The San Antonio-based oil and gas exploration and production (E&P) firm is planning to invest roughly $105.0 million in the next year.  

Out of the total capital spending program, the company will allocate $53.8 million for Bakken shale operations. In the Bakken shale, Abraxas will be drilling 7.2 net wells in 2014 while 6.4 net wells will likely be completed.  

Another, $40.8 million will likely be spent in the Eagle Ford shale play. In the Eagle Ford shale, Abraxas is planning to drill 5 wells and is expected to complete net 6.0 wells in 2014.

The remaining $10.4 million is expected to be invested in leasing additional core operating assets in the Bakken and Eagle Ford plays.

Following the 2014 capital investment plan, Abraxas anticipates 2014 output in the range of 4,900 to 5,100 barrels of oil equivalent per day.

Abraxas also reported the completion of its previously declared sale of WyCross properties. The company has received net $71.4 million from the asset divestment. Abraxas reveals that it will likely utilize the proceeds to pay off debts and invest in core operating areas in the Bakken and Eagle Ford shale plays.

Abraxas is an independent energy company engaged primarily in the acquisition, exploration, exploitation and production of crude oil and natural gas. The company has operations in the Rocky Mountains in the United States, Permian Basin, onshore Gulf Coast and in Alberta, Canada.

Abraxas currently carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy), which implies that it is expected to outperform the broader U.S. equity market over the next one to three months.

One can also consider players in the energy sector like Harvest Natural Resources Inc. (HNR - Snapshot Report), Tesco Corporation (TESO - Snapshot Report) and Clayton Williams Energy Inc. (CWEI - Snapshot Report). All the stocks sport a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).   

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