Halliburton tops forecasts as revenues surge

Revenue rose to $5.9 billion for the quarter ended December 31, compared with $4.02bn in previous year

FILE - In a Monday, June 26, 2017, file photo, a Halliburton employee works near rows of hydraulic fracturing pumping units at a three pad site in Midland, Texas. Halliburton Co. reports earnings, Monday, Jan. 22, 2018. (Steve Gonzales//Houston Chronicle via AP, File)

Halliburton posted a much bigger than expected quarterly profit in the fourth quarter, benefiting from a shale-driven surge in US oil production towards 10 million barrels per day.

Shares in the oilfield services provider rose around 1 per cent in pre-market as the company posted a profit of 53 cents a share, beating average analyst estimates of 46 cents per share, as per Thomson Reuters.

The company also made a US$1.05 billion provision for income tax payments chiefly related to recently-passed changes in US corporate taxation.

Like its cross-town rival Schlumberger last week, the company sounded upbeat about the health of the US oil industry.


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"I am optimistic about what I see in 2018," the chief executive Jeff Miller said.

"Commodity prices are supportive of increasing activity in North America and I am encouraged by the increase in tender activity and the positive discussions we are having with our international customers."

Halliburton, which makes about 55 per cent of its revenue from North American operations, said revenue rose to $5.9 billion for the quarter ended December 31, compared with $4.02bn in the previous year. Revenue in North America came in at $3.4bn, up from $1.8bn in 2016.

Schlumberger last week beat Wall Street forecasts and gave an upbeat outlook, predicting its international operations would grow in 2018 for the first time in four years.