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Thursday's most followed: Home Retail, Argos, Sirius Minerals, President Petroleum, Max Petr, 888

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President Petroleum (LON:PPC) has decided to plug and abandon the Kafoury 3 well after a test to find out whether there was any potential for commercial gas flow was inconclusive. The company also said that the drilling of the Northumberland 2 well is underway, on schedule and on budget.

Shares in the company tumbled 19% on the news.

Sirius Minerals (LON:SXX) has completed a placing to raise gross proceeds of £20 million. The company placed 153.85 million shares at a price of £0.13 per share. Sirius will use the funds to progress its portfolio of potash projects, in particular the York potash project.

This will include a new drilling programme and a series of studies on the geological, environmental, and engineering aspects of the project.

San Leon Energy (LON:SLE) announced that the Irish government has granted formal approval for the transfer of the OMV (Ireland) Killala Exploration GmbH interest in Irish Continental Shelf Petroleum Exploration Licence No: 3/05 to San Leon.

“The Rockall Licence offers two prospects with significant exploration upside and we are excited by the potential to bring in new partners seeking interests in the Atlantic Margin,” said executive chairman of San Leon Oisin Fanning.

Max Petroleum (LON:MXP) announced that Macquarie Bank Limited exercised a right to subscribe for 134 million shares at an exercise price of 4.538 pence per share. Proceeds from the exercise of US$9.8 million have been used to pay down the principal amount outstanding under the company's revolving credit facility with Macquarie Bank.

Following the exercise, the total loan commitment under the credit facility is US$68.5 million of which US$6 million is currently outstanding, leaving US$62.5 million in borrowing capacity.

Home Retail Group (LON:HOME) dropped 7.5% on a profit warning today. The company said that group benchmark pre-tax profit for the year to 26 February is now expected to be between £250 million and £255 million, which is below its previous guidance of £263 million.

Sales at Argos declined 3.1% to £520 million in the final 8 weeks of the year, while like for likes were down 4.6%.

“There are clear signs of further pressures on consumer spending, with recent trading conditions, particularly at Argos, proving to be more difficult and volatile than we anticipated. Against the backdrop of the challenging economic environment, and taking in to account our most recent trading, we are now planning with increased caution for the year ahead,” said chief executive of Home Retail Group Terry Duddy.

888 Holdings (LON:888) said that the Nevada State Gaming Control Board has considered an application made by Caesars Interactive Entertainment (CIE) for a finding of suitability concerning its supplier relationship with 888’s independent B2B division Dragonfish and recommended to the Nevada Gaming Commission (NGC) that the requested finding of suitability be granted to CIE.

The NGC will consider the Application on 24 March 2011.

Coastal Energy (LON:CEO) said that the Bua Ban North A-01 exploration well encountered 32 feet of net pay in the Miocene interval and 27 feet of net pay in the Upper Oligocene interval, both with 25% average porosity.

“We are very pleased with the results of the first well at Bua Ban North.  We have confirmed the extension of the petroleum system to the northern part of the basin,” said chief executive of Coastal Energy Randy Bartley.

The Bua Ban North A-02 well has been spudded and will test Miocene, Oligocene, and Eocene targets similar to those in the A-01 well in an upthrown fault block.

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