On the one hand, the Houston-based oilfield service company reported income of $552 million, or $0.54 per share. That's a nearly 13% rise from its year-ago $488 million, or $0.46 per share. But let's take a closer look at its results from continuing operations. Without the KBR
As for that geography lesson: In North America -- by far its largest market -- Halliburton's operating income stayed essentially flat at $494 million, up just $1 million year over year. In Latin America, however, the company realized operating income of $75 million, a 36% year-over-year increase. Earnings from operations in Europe, Africa, and the former Soviet republics increased by 49% to $149 million, while contributions from the Middle East and Africa rose 23% to $127 million.
Is it any wonder that Dave Lesar, the company's chairman, president, and CEO, announced during the quarter that he will open a headquarters in Dubai? With KBR jettisoned, Halliburton clearly must alter the geographic mix of its business. The company took a likely step in that direction Thursday, announcing its acquisition of PSL Energy Services, a U.K.-based company providing assorted assistance to energy producers from bases in Britain, Norway, the Middle East, Azerbaijan, Algeria, and locations in the Asia-Pacific region.
"This quarter marks the start of a new chapter in Halliburton's history as we completed the separation of KBR," Lesar said Thursday. "I am encouraged by the prospects that await us."
So am I, and I'd suggest that -- given what I believe will be an extremely active future for energy companies -- Foolish investors should take a very hard look at Halliburton. I'd also urge you to examine its major-energy services peers, including Schlumberger
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