Baker Hughes posts loss after cutting 2,000 more jobs

Baker Hughes reported a $429 million net loss for the third quarter after cutting an additional 2,000 jobs.

The workforce reductions for the Houston oilfield services giant are continuing beyond many other competitors because Baker Hughes was limited in its ability to make cuts while its failed merger with Halliburton remained pending. That deal collapsed in the beginning of May amid anti-trust opposition from the Justice Department.

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Baker Hughes’s quarterly loss compares to a $159 million loss during he same time last year, but also to a $911 million loss during the second quarter of this year. The second-quarter loss still came even when counting in a $3.5 billion termination fee paid to Baker Hughes by Halliburton.

Baker Hughes Chief Executive said the smaller losses were “driven mainly by the decisive actions we took to right-size our operating structure.”

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Those 2,000 jobs cut globally bring its tally of workforce reductions to 28,000 positions in less than two years during the oil bust. That includes 25,000 terminations and about 3,000 job lost via attrition. Baker Hughes still employs about 34,000 people, down from a headcount of more than 62,000 employees before the oil bust began in late 2014.

Craighead indicated he believes the worst of the bust is now over in North America, but that the industry remains in a downward slope internationally and offshore. “We expect activity in North America to modestly increase, as our customer community slowly begins to ramp up activity in what remains a tough pricing environment,” he added.