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Chesapeake Energy's stock bounces into the green as investors digest Q1 results

Tomi Kilgore

Shares of Chesapeake Energy Corp. swung to a gain in very active morning trade Wednesday, reversing an earlier loss, after investors had time to digest the oil and gas company's first-quarter results. Trading volume reached 21.6 million shares, enough to make the stock the most actively traded on the NYSE. The stock rose 0.5%, after being down as much as 3.6% soon after the open, and down as much as 7.6% in premarket trade. The initial selloff came after the company reported an adjusted net loss of 2 cents, which FactSet said compared with the average analyst estimate for a profit of 14 cents a share. Chesapeake also reported revenue that fell below forecasts. Analyst Neal Dingmann at SunTrust Robinson Humphrey said in a note to clients that Chesapeake's results beat Street forecasts for earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA), as production and prices were above projections. "We believe the stock should be higher on the positive release, but it [was] down...largely due to the switch to successful efforts with numbers not matching analysts' estimates," Dingmann wrote. He maintained his hold rating and $3 stock price target. The stock has gained 33% year to date while the S&P 500 has tacked on 15%.