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Section 1: 10-K (SWN 2019 FORM 10-K)

swn-20191231
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Table of Contents
Index to Financial Statements

UNITED STATES
SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION
Washington, D.C. 20549
Form 10-K
Annual Report pursuant to Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934
For the fiscal year ended December 31, 2019
Commission file number 001-08246
403025117_swn-20191231_g1.jpg
Southwestern Energy Company
(Exact name of registrant as specified in its charter)
Delaware71-0205415
(State or other jurisdiction of incorporation or organization)(I.R.S. Employer Identification No.)
10000 Energy Drive
Spring, Texas 77389
(Address of principal executive offices)(Zip Code)
(832) 796-1000
(Registrant’s telephone number, including area code)
Securities registered pursuant to Section 12(b) of the Act:
Title of each classTrading Symbol(s)Name of each exchange on which registered
Common Stock, Par Value $0.01SWNNew York Stock Exchange
Securities registered pursuant to Section 12(g) of the Act:  None
Indicate by check mark if the registrant is a well-known seasoned issuer, as defined in Rule 405 of the Securities Act. Yes ☒   No ☐
Indicate by check mark if the registrant is not required to file reports pursuant to Section 13 or Section 15(d) of the Act. Yes ☐   No ☒
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant (1) has filed all reports required to be filed by Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to file such reports), and (2) has been subject to such filing requirements for the past 90 days. Yes ☒   No ☐
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant has submitted electronically every Interactive Data File required to be submitted pursuant to Rule 405 of Regulation S-T (§232.405 of this chapter) during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to submit such files). Yes ☒   No ☐
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a large accelerated filer, an accelerated filer, a non-accelerated filer, a smaller reporting company, or an emerging growth company. See the definitions of “large accelerated filer,” “accelerated filer,” “smaller reporting company,” and “emerging growth company” in Rule 12b-2 of the Exchange Act.
Large accelerated filerAccelerated filerNon-accelerated filerSmaller reporting companyEmerging growth company
If an emerging growth company, indicate by check mark if the registrant has elected not to use the extended transition period for complying with any new or revised financial accounting standards provided pursuant to Section 13(a) of the Exchange Act. ☐
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a shell company (as defined in Rule 12b-2 of the Act). Yes    No ☒ 
The aggregate market value of the voting stock held by non-affiliates of the registrant was $1,703,566,444 based on the New York Stock Exchange – Composite Transactions closing price on June 30, 2019 of $3.16. For purposes of this calculation, the registrant has assumed that its directors and executive officers are affiliates.
As of February 25, 2020, the number of outstanding shares of the registrant’s Common Stock, par value $0.01, was 541,057,922.
Document Incorporated by Reference
Portions of the registrant’s definitive proxy statement to be filed with respect to the annual meeting of stockholders to be held on or about May 19, 2020 are incorporated by reference into Part III of this Form 10-K.



Table of Contents
Index to Financial Statements
SOUTHWESTERN ENERGY COMPANY
ANNUAL REPORT ON FORM 10-K
For Fiscal Year Ended December 31, 2019
TABLE OF CONTENTS
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This Annual Report on Form 10-K (“Annual Report”) includes certain statements that may be deemed to be “forward-looking” within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, or the Securities Act, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, or the Exchange Act.  We refer you to “Risk Factors” in Item 1A of Part I and to “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations – Cautionary Statement about Forward-Looking Statements” in Item 7 of Part II of this Annual Report for a discussion of factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from any such forward-looking statements.  The electronic version of this Annual Report, Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q, Current Reports on Form 8-K and amendments to those forms filed or furnished pursuant to Section 13(a) or 15(d) of the Exchange Act are available free of charge as soon as reasonably practicable after they are filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, or SEC, on our website at www.swn.com.  Our corporate governance guidelines and the charters of the Audit, the Compensation, the Health, Safety, Environment and Corporate Responsibility and the Nominating and Governance Committees of our Board of Directors are available on our website and, upon request, in print free of charge to any stockholder.  Information on our website is not incorporated into this report.
We file periodic reports, current reports and proxy statements with the SEC electronically.  The SEC maintains an internet website that contains reports, proxy and information statements, and other information regarding issuers that file electronically with the SEC. The address of the SEC’s website is www.sec.gov.  The public may also read and copy any materials we file with the SEC at the SEC’s Public Reference Room at 100 F Street N.E., Washington, D.C. 20549.  The public may obtain information about the operation of the Public Reference Room by calling the SEC at 1-800-SEC-0330.

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PART I
ITEM 1. BUSINESS
Southwestern Energy Company (including its subsidiaries, collectively, “we”, “our”, “us”, “the Company” or “Southwestern”) is an independent energy company engaged in exploration, development and production activities, including the related marketing of natural gas, oil and natural gas liquids (“NGLs”) produced in our operations.  Southwestern is a holding company whose assets consist of direct and indirect ownership interests in, and whose business is conducted substantially through, its subsidiaries.  Currently we operate exclusively in the United States.  Our common stock is listed and traded on the NYSE under the ticker symbol “SWN.”
Southwestern, which is incorporated in Delaware, has its executive offices located at 10000 Energy Drive, Spring, Texas 77389, and can be reached by phone at 832-796-1000.  The Company also maintains offices in Tunkhannock, Pennsylvania and Morgantown, West Virginia. 
Our Business Strategy
We aim to deliver sustainable and industry-leading returns through excellence in exploration and production and marketing performance from our extensive resource base and targeted expansion of our activities and assets along the hydrocarbon value chain.  Our Company’s formula embodies our corporate philosophy and guides how we operate our business:
403025117_swn-20191231_g2.jpg
Our formula, “The Right People doing the Right Things, wisely investing the cash flow from our underlying Assets will create Value+,” also guides our business strategy.  We always strive to attract and retain strong talent, to work safely and act ethically with unwavering vigilance for the environment and the communities in which we operate, and to creatively apply technical skills, which we believe will grow long-term value for our shareholders.  The arrow in our formula is not a straight line: we acknowledge that factors may adversely affect quarter-by-quarter results, but the path over time points to value creation.
In applying these core principles, we concentrate on:
Financial Strength. We are committed to rigorously managing our balance sheet and financial risks.  We budget to invest from our net cash flow from operations, supplemented during 2019 and 2020 by a portion of the proceeds from the 2018 Fayetteville Shale sale (described below).  Additionally, we protect our projected cash flows through hedging and continue to maintain a strong balance sheet with ample liquidity. 
Increasing Margins. We apply strong technical, operational, commercial and marketing skills to reduce costs, improve the productivity of our wells and pursue commercial arrangements to extract greater value.  We believe our demonstrated ability to improve margins, especially by leveraging the scale of our large assets, gives us a competitive advantage as we move into the future.
Exercising Capital Allocation Discipline. We continually assess market conditions in order to adjust our capital allocation decisions to maximize shareholder returns.  This allocation process includes consideration of multiple alternatives including but not limited to the development of our natural gas and oil assets, strategic acquisitions, reducing debt and returning capital to our shareholders.
Operational Value Creation.  We prepare an economic analysis for our drilling programs and other investments based upon the expected net present value added for each dollar to be invested, which we refer to as Present Value Index, or PVI.  We target projects that generate the highest returns in excess of our cost of capital.  This disciplined investment approach governs our investment decisions at all times, including the current lower-price commodity market.
Dynamic Management of Assets Throughout Life Cycle.  We own large-scale, long-life assets in various phases of development.  In early stages, we ramp up development through technical, operational and commercial skills, and as they grow we look for ways to maximize their value through efficient operating practices along with applying our commercial and marketing expertise.
Deepening Our Inventory.  We continue to expand the inventory of properties that we can develop profitably by converting our extensive resources into proved reserves, targeting additions whose productivity largely has been demonstrated and improving efficiencies in production.
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The Hydrocarbon Value Chain. We believe that our vertical integration enhances our margins and provides us competitive advantages.  For example, we own and operate drilling rigs and well stimulation equipment and have invested in a water transportation project in West Virginia, which has provided up to $0.8 million in savings per well.  These activities provide operational flexibility, lower our well costs, minimize the risk of unavailability of these resources from third parties and capture additional value over time.
Technological Innovation.  Our people constantly search for the next revolutionary technology and other operational advancements to capture greater value in unconventional hydrocarbon resource development.  These developments – whether single, step-changing technologies or a combination of several incremental ones – can reduce finding and development costs and thus increase our margins.
Environmental Solutions and Policy Formation. We are a leader in identifying and implementing innovative solutions to unconventional hydrocarbon development to minimize the environmental and community impacts of our activities.  We work extensively with governmental, non-governmental and industry stakeholders to develop responsible and cost-effective programs.  We demonstrate that a company can operate responsibly and profitably, putting us in a better position to comply with new regulations as they evolve.
During 2019 we executed on these business strategies by:
Shifting strategic focus to our liquids-rich portfolio in Southwest Appalachia to take advantage of more favorable commodity pricing;
Lowering our costs through drilling, completions and operational efficiencies and optimizing gathering and transportation costs;
Continuing to identify and implement structural, process and organizational changes to further reduce general and administrative costs;
Improving our debt profile by opportunistically repurchasing debt at a discount and extending the maturity of our revolving credit facility to 2024;
Maintaining a robust multi-year hedging program to ensure a certain level of cash flow;
Focusing on delivering operational excellence with improved well productivity and economics from enhanced completion techniques, water infrastructure projects, optimization of surface equipment and managing reservoir drawdown; and
Expanding our proved reserve quantities in Appalachia through our successful drilling program, lower cost structure and improved operational performance.
The bulk of our operations, which we refer to as “Exploration and Production” (“E&P”), are focused on the finding and development of natural gas, oil and NGL reserves.  We are also focused on creating and capturing additional value through our marketing business, which we refer to as “Marketing” but previously referred to as “Midstream” when it included the operation of gathering systems.
On December 3, 2018, we completed the sale of 100% of the equity in certain of our subsidiaries that conducted our operations in Arkansas, which were primarily focused on the Fayetteville Shale (the “Fayetteville Shale sale”). We refer you to Note 3 to the consolidated financial statements included in the Annual Report for additional discussion about the Fayetteville Shale sale.
Exploration and Production
Overview
Our primary business is the exploration for, and production of, natural gas, oil and NGLs, with our current operations solely within the United States.  We are currently focused on the development of unconventional natural gas reservoirs located in Pennsylvania and West Virginia.  Our operations in northeast Pennsylvania (herein referred to as “Northeast Appalachia”) are primarily focused on the unconventional natural gas reservoir known as the Marcellus Shale, and our operations in West Virginia and southwest Pennsylvania (herein referred to as “Southwest Appalachia”) are focused on the Marcellus Shale, the Utica and the Upper Devonian unconventional natural gas, oil and NGL reservoirs.  Collectively, our properties located in Pennsylvania and West Virginia are herein referred to as “Appalachia.”
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Our E&P segment recorded operating income of $283 million in 2019, compared to $794 million in 2018.  Operating income for the fiscal year 2018 included $105 million related to operations in the Fayetteville Shale, which was sold in December 2018. Excluding our 2018 operating income from the Fayetteville Shale, our E&P segment operating income decreased $406 million in 2019 from 2018 primarily due to a $285 million decrease in revenues and a $121 million increase in operating expenses. The decrease in revenues was primarily due to lower commodity prices, which were only partially offset by higher production. Operating expenses increased primarily due to increased gathering and processing fees resulting from a shift to liquids-rich production growth in Southwest Appalachia and increased depreciation, depletion and amortization. These results do not include the effects of our derivative program.
Cash flow from operations from our E&P segment was $781 million in 2019, compared to $1.4 billion in 2018.  Cash flow from operations for 2018 included $236 million related to our operations in the Fayetteville Shale. Excluding our cash flow from operations from the Fayetteville Shale, our cash flow from operations decreased $368 million in 2019 from 2018 primarily as a 10% decrease in weighted average commodity prices, including derivatives, and increased operating expenses associated with higher liquids activity more than offset an 11% increase in Appalachia production volumes.
Oilfield Services Vertical Integration
We provide certain oilfield services that are strategic and economically beneficial for our E&P operations when our E&P activity levels and market pricing support these activities.  This vertical integration lowers our well costs, allows us to operate efficiently and helps us to mitigate certain operational and environmental risks.  These services have included drilling, hydraulic fracturing and water management and movement.
As of December 31, 2019, we operated seven drilling rigs and two leased pressure pumping spreads with a total capacity of approximately 72,000 horsepower.  These assets provide us greater flexibility to align our operational activities with commodity prices.  In 2019, we provided drilling rigs for all of our 105 drilled wells.  In addition, we provided hydraulic fracturing services utilizing one pressure pumping spread in Southwest Appalachia.
Our Proved Reserves
For the years ended December 31,
201920182017
Proved reserves: (Bcfe)
Appalachia12,720  11,920  11,088  
Fayetteville Shale—  —  3,679  
Other   
Total proved reserves12,721  11,921  14,775  

Prices used:
Natural gas (per Mcf)
$2.58  $3.10  $2.98  
Oil (per Bbl)
$55.69  $65.56  $47.79  
NGL (per Bbl)
$11.58  $17.64  $14.41  

PV-10: (in millions)
Pre-tax$3,735  $6,524  $5,784  
PV of taxes(35) (525) (222) 
After-tax$3,700  $5,999  $5,562  

Percent of estimated proved reserves that are:
Natural gas68 %67 %75 %
Proved developed50 %47 %54 %

Percent of E&P operating revenues generated by natural gas sales71 %78 %85 %
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Our reserve estimates and the after-tax PV-10 measure, or standardized measure of discounted future net cash flows relating to proved natural gas, oil and NGL reserve quantities, are highly dependent upon the respective commodity price used in our reserve and after-tax PV-10 calculations.
Our reserves increased 7% in 2019, compared to 2018, primarily through extensions, discoveries and other additions, along with positive performance revisions.
The decrease in our reserves in 2018, compared to 2017, was primarily due to the Fayetteville Shale sale. Excluding the impact of the Fayetteville Shale sale, our reserves increased 7% in 2018, compared to 2017, primarily through extensions, discoveries and other additions, along with increases in both price and performance revisions in Appalachia. 
Our after-tax PV-10 value decreased in 2019 compared to 2018 as higher reserve levels and lower future development and production costs were more than offset by lower commodity prices.
We are the designated operator of approximately 99% of our reserves, based on the pre-tax PV-10 value of our proved developed producing reserves, and our reserve life index was approximately 16.4 years at year-end 2019.
The difference in after-tax PV-10 and pre-tax PV-10 (a non-GAAP measure which is reconciled in the 2019 Proved Reserves by Category and Summary Operating Data table below) is the discounted value of future income taxes on the estimated cash flows.   
We believe that the pre-tax PV-10 value of the estimated cash flows related to our estimated proved reserves is a useful supplemental disclosure to the after-tax PV-10 value.  Pre-tax PV-10 is based on prices, costs and discount factors that are comparable from company to company, while the after-tax PV-10 is dependent on the unique tax situation of each individual company.  We understand that securities analysts use pre-tax PV-10 as one measure of the value of a company’s current proved reserves and to compare relative values among peer companies without regard to income taxes.  We refer you to “Supplemental Oil and Gas Disclosures” in Item 8 of Part II of this Annual Report for a discussion of our standardized measure of discounted future cash flows related to our proved natural gas, oil and NGL reserves, to the risk factor “Our proved natural gas, oil and NGL reserves are estimates that include uncertainties.  Any material change to these uncertainties or underlying assumptions could cause the quantities and net present value of our reserves to be overstated or understated” in Item 1A of Part I of this Annual Report, and to “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations – Cautionary Statement about Forward-Looking Statements” in Item 7 of Part II of this Annual Report for a discussion of the risks inherent in utilization of standardized measures and estimated reserve data.
Lower natural gas, oil and NGL prices reduce the value of our assets, both by a direct reduction in what the production could be sold for and by making some properties uneconomic, resulting in decreases to the overall value of our reserves and potential non-cash impairment charges to earnings.  Given the fall in commodity prices in 2019 and early 2020 and assuming that commodity prices remain at January 2020 levels for the rest of the first quarter of 2020, we expect a non-cash impairment to our natural gas and oil properties in the first quarter of 2020 ranging from approximately $400 million to $600 million, net of tax. Further non-cash impairments in future periods could occur if the trailing 12-month commodity prices decrease as compared to the average used in prior periods.
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The following table provides an overall and categorical summary of our natural gas, oil and NGL reserves, as of year-end 2019 based on average year prices, and our well count, net acreage and PV-10 as of December 31, 2019, and sets forth 2019 annual information related to production and capital investments for each of our operating areas:
2019 PROVED RESERVES BY CATEGORY AND SUMMARY OPERATING DATA  
Appalachia
NortheastSouthwest
Other (1)
Total
Estimated proved reserves:
Natural gas (Bcf):
Developed3,570  1,336  —  4,906  
Undeveloped1,267  2,457  —  3,724  
4,837  3,793  —  8,630  
Crude oil (MMBbls):
Developed—  26.0  0.1  26.1  
Undeveloped—  46.8  —  46.8  
—  72.8  0.1  72.9  
Natural gas liquids (MMBbls):
Developed—  226.3  —  226.3  
Undeveloped—  382.5  —  382.5  
—  608.8  —  608.8  
Total proved reserves (Bcfe) (2):
Developed3,570  2,850   6,421  
Undeveloped1,267  5,033  —  6,300  
4,837  7,883   12,721  
Percent of total38 %62 %0%  100 %

Percent proved developed74 %36 %100 %50 %
Percent proved undeveloped26 %64 %0%  50 %

Production (Bcfe)
459  319  —  778  
Capital investments (in millions)
$365  $710  $63  
(3)
$1,138  
Total gross producing wells (4)
1,211  496  14  1,721  
Total net producing wells637  466  14  1,117  

Total net acreage173,994  287,693  40,389  
(5)
502,076  
Net undeveloped acreage53,435  205,222  27,334  
(5)
285,991  

PV-10:
Pre-tax (in millions) (6)
$2,251  $1,486  $(2) 
(7)
$3,735  
PV of taxes (in millions) (6)
(21) (14) —  (35) 
After-tax (in millions) (6)
$2,230  $1,472  $(2) 
(7)
$3,700  
Percent of total60 %40 %0%  100 %
Percent operated (8)
99 %100 %100 %99 %
(1)Other reserves and acreage consists primarily of properties in Colorado. 
(2)We have no reserves from synthetic gas, synthetic oil or nonrenewable natural resources intended to be upgraded into synthetic gas or oil.  We used standard engineering and geoscience methods, or a combination of methodologies in determining estimates of material properties, including performance and test date analysis, offset statistical analogy of performance data, volumetric evaluation, including analysis of petrophysical parameters (including porosity, net pay, fluid saturations (i.e., water, oil and gas) and permeability) in combination with estimated reservoir parameters (including reservoir temperature and pressure, formation depth and formation volume factors), geological analysis, including structure and isopach maps and seismic analysis, including review of 2-D and 3-D data to ascertain faults, closure and other factors.
(3)Other capital investments includes $35 million related to our water infrastructure project, $22 million related to our E&P service companies and $6 million related to other developmental activities.
(4)Represents producing wells, including 516 wells in which we only have an overriding royalty interest in Northeast Appalachia, used in the December 31, 2019 reserves calculation.
(5)Excludes exploration licenses for 2,518,519 net acres in New Brunswick, Canada, which have been subject to a moratorium since 2015.
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(6)Pre-tax PV-10 (a non-GAAP measure) is one measure of the value of a company’s proved reserves that we believe is used by securities analysts to compare relative values among peer companies without regard to income taxes.  The reconciling difference in pre-tax PV-10 and the after-tax PV-10, or standardized measure, is the discounted value of future income taxes on the estimated cash flows from our proved natural gas, oil and NGL reserves.
(7)Includes future asset retirement obligations outside of Appalachia.
(8)Based upon pre-tax PV-10 of proved developed producing activities.
Lease Expirations
The following table summarizes the leasehold acreage expiring over the next three years, assuming successful wells are not drilled to develop the acreage and leases are not extended:
For the years ended December 31,
Net acreage expiring:202020212022
Northeast Appalachia3,082  
(1)
1,750  4,567  
Southwest Appalachia (2)
15,584  
(1)
5,804  14,536  
Other
US – Other Exploration
11,949  5,679  650  
US – Sand Wash Basin5,630  3,425  —  
Canada – New Brunswick (3)
—  2,518,519  —  
(1)We have no reported proved undeveloped locations expiring in 2020.
(2)Of this acreage, 1,726 net acres in 2020, 2,173 net acres in 2021 and 6,907 net acres in 2022 can be extended for an average of 4.9 years.
(3)Exploration licenses were extended through 2021 but have been subject to a moratorium since 2015.
We refer you to “Supplemental Oil and Gas Disclosures” in Item 8 of Part II of this Annual Report for a more detailed discussion of our proved natural gas, oil and NGL reserves as well as our standardized measure of discounted future net cash flows related to our proved natural gas, oil and NGL reserves.  We also refer you to the risk factor “Our proved natural gas, oil and NGL reserves are estimates that include uncertainties.  Any material changes to these uncertainties or underlying assumptions could cause the quantities and net present value of our reserves to be overstated or understated” in Item 1A of Part I of this Annual Report and to “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations – Cautionary Statement about Forward-Looking Statements” in Item 7 of Part II of this Annual Report for a discussion of the risks inherent in utilization of standardized measures and estimated reserve data.
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Proved Undeveloped Reserves
Presented below is a summary of changes in our proved undeveloped reserves for 2017, 2018 and 2019:
CHANGES IN PROVED UNDEVELOPED RESERVES
Appalachia
Fayetteville Shale (1)
Total
(in Bcfe)NortheastSouthwest
December 31, 201634  —  43  77  
Extensions, discoveries and other additions (2)
1,100  5,186  543  6,829  
Performance and production revisions (3)
—   (14) (8) 
Price revisions —