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Spotlight: US M&A activity continues to grow in the fourth quarter

A version of this Spotlight from S&P Global Platts Analytics was first published Oct. 13.

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M&A activity has continued to increase with three deals thus far in the fourth quarter, totaling roughly $330 million.

Northern Oil and Gas bought non-operated interest in 400 Bakken wells from Comstock Resources for $154 million.

An undisclosed buyer purchased 22,000 net acres in the Eagle Ford from Callon Petroleum for $100 million.

SilverBow Resources purchased 17,000 net acres in the Eagle Ford from two sellers for a total of $75 million.

While the three most recent M&A deals don't amount to a substantial sum, it is a fairly strong indicator that operators are still working to enhance their acreage positions and suggests that M&A activity may remain quite strong through the end of the year.

These deals follow closely behind the huge ConocoPhillips-Shell transaction, which included 225,000 net acres in the Delaware Basin, for $9.5 billion in all cash. With almost the entire fourth quarter left in the year, M&A activity stands at $47.5 billion and is only $6 billion away from becoming the most active year for M&A since 2014.