Oil collapse claims 343 more Texas jobs

An oil field services company and a manufacturer have laid off more than 300 people in Texas as the global crude collapse continues to batter the industry, according to the latest notifications provided to state regulators.

FTS International shuttered a plant in Bryan last week, shedding 194 workers , the privately owned firm told the Texas Workforce Commission in a letter last week. The Fort Worth-based well completion company, which operates in all the major domestic shale plays, wrote that it made the decision after losing “a significant amount of work” in the area.

Oil field services companies have been hit hard by collapsing oil prices as oil companies  lay down rigs and delay spending the U.S. oil patch.

“Although this closure affects a small percentage of our total workforce of approximately 4,000 employees, we do regret that current circumstances have resulted in this impact on our people,” spokeswoman Lynaia Lutes said in a statement.

While oil and gas companies have been bearing the brunt of the oil collapse, the downturn’s ripple effects are extending to the state’s once-booming manufacturing sector, too.

Lufkin Industries, which designs, manufactures and services equipment for the oil field and power transmission sectors, shed 149 workers in February and March, according to the company’s notification to the state. The layoffs at the East Texas firm, which is  part of GE Oil & Gas, affected workers assigned to the foundry, which produces metal for various industries, including oil and gas.

Texas manufacturing executives have grown more pessimistic in recent months about future business conditions, saying that spending cuts in the oil and gas industry have sapped sales and dried up orders. The downturn has been particularly bad for metal manufacturers like Lufkin Industries that count oil and gas companies among their clients.