McMoRan Exploration Co. Earnings Call Insights: Drilling Program and the Davy Jones Status

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McMoRan Exploration Co. (NYSE:MMR) recently reported its fourth quarter earnings and discussed the following topics in its earnings conference call.

Drilling Program

Lee Cooperman – Omega Advisors: Maybe, I can ask you to peer into the future, if you’re willing to and to make it easy for you, I’ll give you the assumptions that I’m going to give you for the question – surrounding the question I am asking. The deal closes in the second quarter as expected. Your planned drilling program moves ahead as you anticipate. You find in the ultra-deep what you think, that you have. When does the first income flow come to the royalty trust owners?

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James R. Moffett – Co-Chairman, President and CEO: Looking at our portfolio prospects, the onshore well will probably come on first and Davy Jones No. 2 and No. 1 would be on about the same time. Now whereas we have the facilities in place for Davy Jones, and we will put that on when the wells are completed, because of the onshore wells being above 25,000 feet, across space that we now see as a result of the result Lineham Creek. So those would be the most likely to come on first.

Lee Cooperman – Omega Advisors: But whether this translate would you get, if it all goes according to your plan. You think we’re two years away from cash flow to the royalty trust owners?

James R. Moffett – Co-Chairman, President and CEO: (indiscernible).

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