American oilfield services company Halliburton will cut thousands of more jobs amid declining oil prices. The redundancies will be across the globe over the next several weeks.
The company will lay-off around 5,000 employees, which is 8% of its workforce, spokeswoman Emily Mir told Reuters on 25 February. Chief executive Dave Lesar and president Jeff Miller in a memo to its employees said, "Our industry has turned down faster than anyone ever expected." The executives added that it was clearer now that business opportunities coming into 2016 will be "much worse than anticipated".
This is not the first wave of redundancies for Halliburton. The company has let go of around 22,000 employees since 2014, which translates to about 25% of its workforce. At the end of 2015, it had a total workforce of around 65,000 employees, which is down from the 80,000 staff it had at the end of 2014.
Since mid-2014, oil prices have plummeted more than 70%, which has resulted in job cuts by many companies operating in the sector. In January 2016, Schlumberger, the world's largest oilfield services company, announced that it had axed 10,000 employees from its 95,000-strong workforce "in anticipation of extended activity weakness in the first half of 2016".
Falling crude prices have resulted in a reduction in drilling activity in the US, which has adversely affected companies such as Halliburton and rival Schlumberger, who provide tools and expertise to drill oil without owning the ground reserves.
Apart from the job cuts, Halliburton has tried to make up for the declining oil prices by consolidating facilities in 20 countries, apart from shutting operations completely in two other countries.
Smaller oil services companies too are experiencing financial distress. According to law firm Haynes & Boone, a minimum of 44 companies operating in the oil services space, have filed for bankruptcy since the end of 2014.