Feb 10, 2015 3:38 PM

Halliburton says it will eliminate at least 5,000 jobs

The Associated Press

NEW YORK (AP) Oil and gas drilling services company Halliburton said Tuesday that it will eliminate at least 5,000 jobs in response to falling oil prices.

The Houston company said it will lay off 6.5 to 8 percent of its staff, which represents 5,005 to 6,160 employees based on its total from the end of 2014.

The company said the cuts will come from all areas of its operations and that the moves are necessary because of the difficult market. Halliburton did not provide any details on the timing of the cuts or what the moves might cost.

Halliburton Co. also cut about 1,000 jobs from its Eastern hemisphere workforce in December. Halliburton said the moves are not related to its pending acquisition of competitor Baker Hughes Inc.

Shares of Halliburton fell $1.13, or 2.6 percent, to $42.38 in afternoon trading.

Oil prices plunged 60 percent from June to January, although they have recovered some of those losses recently. In January Halliburton said 2015 will be a difficult year for its industry, saying its customers have cut their capital spending budgets by 25 or 30 percent in response to lower oil prices.

Halliburton also took $129 million in restructuring charges because of expected business declines.

Halliburton competitor Schlumberger Ltd. said in January that it would eliminate 9,000 jobs in response to falling oil prices. That represented about 7.3 percent of Schlumberger's staff.

Also last month, Halliburton takeover target Baker Hughes said it would lay off about 7,000 workers as it braced for a downturn in orders because of the plunge in crude prices. That represented about an 11 percent cut to the 62,000-plus workers Baker Hughes says it employs worldwide.

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