“The move makes better use of the new tower, and being in the same building improves interaction and communication, which is a big positive,” said Gheit, an analyst with Oppenheimer in New York.
Ending the company's presence in the country's oil capital will not hurt Devon, Gheit said.
“The two cities are a short flight apart, and leaving Houston should not be an issue,” he said. “This decision was cheered by investors.”
Devon shares improved $1.15 a share, or 1.9 percent, Thursday to close at $61.63 on the New York Stock Exchange.
Devon's decision also was cheered by Oklahoma City community and business leaders.
“It's terrific from several standpoints,” said Roy Williams, president of the Greater Oklahoma City Chamber. “The additional payroll that will occur here is tremendous as well as the additional presence of that number of people downtown. It will add to the vibrancy of restaurants and will be good for hotels and the housing market.”
Not long ago, energy and other jobs regularly moved from Oklahoma to Houston, but Thursday's announcement continues a recent trend of jobs relocating to Oklahoma City.
“We are now net immigrating people as opposed to exporting them,” Williams said. “We're seeing more Texans moving to Oklahoma than Oklahomans moving to Texas. We're seeing the same trend from California and all the contiguous states. That brings in new talent, new entrepreneurs and new market capacity. It's a really good indication of the buzz and economic activity that is happening here.”
Jay F. Marks, Business Writer