Came across some positive news for North Dakota amidst this downturn in the industry. SterneAgee analysts Tim Rezvan and Truman Hobbs presented at Hart Energy's DUG Bakken and Niobrara conference earlier this month where they learned that operators remain bullish about downspacing initiatives on core acreage in the Bakken/Three Forks, and generally agreed that break-even costs for core areas are in the high $40s per barrel level. The analysts also learned that Hess Corporation has plans to conduct five pilots on a 9 middle Bakken/8 Three Forks wells per unit configuration, including tests near QEP Resources' prolific South Antelope property in eastern McKenzie County. While rig counts have declined and overall activity has certainly slowed, the positive is that companies continue to remain active in North Dakota. You can read more about the analysts' findings in Bob Downing's post for the Akron Beacon Journal.