Halliburton says 'meaningful' rise in activity likely at $50 oil

Wed Oct 19, 2016 11:59am EDT
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By Anet Josline Pinto

(Reuters) - Halliburton Co, the world's No.2 oilfield services provider, said oil prices would have to stabilize at above $50 per barrel for producers to meaningfully increase oilfield activity.

The company posted a surprise quarterly profit on Wednesday by "relentlessly managing costs" and taking advantage of a rise in the number of rigs operating in North America.

Halliburton shares rose as much as 6 percent to $49.81 in morning trading, their highest in nearly 18 months.

Oil prices have nearly doubled since touching a low of $26.05 in February, prompting oil producers to put rigs back to work.

U.S. oil was trading at $51.80 at 1534 GMT (1134 EDT), the tenth day in a row it has traded above $50.

The U.S. onshore rig count rose by about a quarter in the three months ended September, according to a closely watched report from Baker Hughes Inc, which competes with Halliburton.

The rise in U.S. rig count is being driven by smaller operators, Halliburton Chief Executive Dave Lesar said on a post-earnings call.

"We saw a trend of less service-intensive wells, which is not activity typically worth chasing at today's pricing," he said.   Continued...

The company logo of Halliburton oilfield services corporate offices is seen in Houston, Texas April 6, 2012.    REUTERS/Richard Carson/File Photo