Baytex Energy cutting capital spending, ending dividend payouts

Exploration and development spending will be 25% below the 2015 levels next year.

CALGARY — Baytex Energy Corp. says it’s taking “difficult but necessary steps” to get past current low commodity prices, including a reduced capital program and the suspension of its monthly dividend.

The Calgary-based company says it will stop drilling in the Peace River and Lloydminster areas in Western Canada for the rest of this year and also look for further cost reductions in Texas, where it’s involved in the Eagle Ford play.

Baytex also currently anticipates next year’s exploration and development spending will be 25% below the 2015 levels, dropping to a range of between $350 million and $400 million.

Its cash dividends will be stopped after the Sept. 10 payment of 10 cents per share.

It’s the second time Baytax has slashed its monthly payout to shareholders since oil prices began to plunge late last year. It had risen to 20 cents per share in December but was cut in half in January.

© 2015 The Canadian Press

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