XTO picks Lower 48 onshore gas as 'the better way to go'

XTO Energy Inc., Fort Worth, Tex., is an acquisition and development firm that decided in the late 1990s that its best chance for success was exploitation of natural gas properties, primarily in the Lower 48."Along about 1996, our reserves were evenly divided between oil and gas. But we decided gas was the better way to go," said Bob R. Simpson, chairman and CEO of the former Cross Timbers Oil Co., which last year changed its name to XTO Energy. "The best opportunities in the Lower 48 were in gas. A gas shortage was building, and there were none of the market vagaries of an (Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries). We have a better profit margin from gas."Gas weightedXTO today is w...

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