Shares for international oilfield services company Halliburton (HAL) were up over 5 percent on Monday, trading for as much as $39.41, after the company released its earnings report, and announced that it had been participating in an out of court settlement to deal with “a substantial portion” of private lawsuits relating to its role in the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil disaster.
Excluding expenses, most notably the $637 million the company set aside during the first quarter for legal expenses resulting from the private claims that have been brought against it, Halliburton reported earnings of $624 million, or $0.67 cent per share, on record Q1 revenue of $6.97 billion. This was well in front of analyst estimates that predicted earnings of $0.57 cents per share on revenue of $6.88 billion.
Including expenses, however, the company reported a loss of $18 million, or $0.02 cents per share. Still, investors reacted favorably to news that the 11 percent decline in revenue from North American operations was cushioned by a 21 percent increase in international revenue.
The uptick comes as Halliburton increases its presence in overseas markets like China, Australia, Nigeria, and Saudi Arabia. The world’s lead provider of hydraulic-fracturing services has also been heavily active in drilling and pumping projects in the Mediterranean off the coast of Israel, as well as explorations on Alaska’s North Slope, and in the North Sea off the coast of the United Kingdom.
The company’s disclosure of “court facilitated talks” to settle the Gulf of Mexico suits are equally a factor in Monday’s jump in share-price. The company’s willingness to deal with the issue, even though it is not directly a target of any legal action on the part of the federal government, is seen as being particularly favorable for its image, and its share price, as is the fact that Halliburton’s CEO David Lesar expects an increase in prices for international work.
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