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An oil and gas drilling rig operating in the Permian Basin near Farmington, New Mexico. (Image courtesy of Encana Corp)
An oil and gas drilling rig operating in the Permian Basin near Farmington, New Mexico. (Image courtesy of Encana Corp)

Halliburton hiring in West Texas

According to FuelFix, Halliburton is set to hire 200 workers in the Permian Basin in West Texas and New Mexico.

The Current-Argus reported that Halliburton spokeswoman Emily Mir said in late December there will be job opportunities throughout the Permian, including in Artesia.

As the oil industry begins to see a small upswing, local businesses are crossing their fingers that local economies will see a positive effect as well. While the rest of the industry is still struggling to recover from rock-bottom oil prices in early 2016, hitting $28.36, the lowest price since 2003.

Yet innovation and greater efficiency have helped to trim the excess cost from drilling, making oil profitable at a lower price. In June of last year, Forbes reported the breakeven price in the Permina was $61, far above the price of oil at the time. However, that estimate was drastically lower in an IHS Markit study, citing $50 as closer to the mark.

We at IHS Markit found that the Delaware Basin’s multiple company sub-plays are delivering impressive economics at a $50 per barrel reference, and we attribute that to two primary considerations—early entrance into the play and extensive geologic knowledge,” said analysis author Sven Del Pozzo, CFA, director of energy company and transaction research at IHS Markit.

Most experts now agree that drilling is profitable in the area at anywhere from $45-50.

Shannon Carr, development  coordinator with the Department of Development in Carlsbad, New Mexico, attributed growth in the region to the new OPEC agreements to cut production. She also told the Current Argus “Our incoming president is pro-energy and pro-gas, which is great,” Carr said. “The industry is very complicated and hard to predict, but the prices are right and the companies are looking to expand.” So it’s possible that the hiring spree by Halliburton may be extended to other companies throughout the oil and gas industry. Carr is hopeful that the increase in activity will translate into a recovering Carlsbad economy, hopefully replicated throughout other areas where drilling activity has significantly decreased.

Halliburton’s stock has increased steadily over the last year, and currently sits at $56.53 per share, up from a January 2016 low of $29.11.


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