Thus far, two oilfield services companies have reported their quarterly numbers, and the results are dissimilar. Not that the first of the companies, Halliburton
The second of the two companies, Weatherford
As a result, Weatherford's operating income line for its home continent came in at a $709,000 loss, versus a $224 million gain during last year's comparable quarter, and down a whopping $124 million from just the prior quarter's results.
Fortunately, the company performed better internationally. For instance, in the Middle East/North Africa/Asia region, revenues were up 7%, although its operating income slipped 5% from the same quarter in 2008. Revenues in Europe/West Africa/FSU (that's the former Soviet Union, not Florida State University) declined by 6%, while its operating income fell by 37%.
But the real shining star was Latin America, whose revenue jumped by 72% year over year, despite being flat with the sequentially prior quarter. The most recent quarter's operating income of $86 million was up 47% year over year, and down 7% from the previous quarter.
We'll have to wait for a number of other members of oilfield services companies to arrive at a firm grip about the sector's current condition. For instance, Schlumberger
For my money, however, the number of rigs that have become stacked -- oilfield for "idled" -- and the projects that have been cancelled have dealt a severe blow to the oilfield-service companies in general. Other than perhaps Schlumberger and Halliburton, I'm therefore inclined to keep my powder dry on the group, until a definite change becomes evident.
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Fool contributor David Lee Smith doesn't own shares in any of the companies mentioned in this article. He does solicit your question or comments. National Oilwell Varco is a Motley Fool Stock Advisor selection. Try any of our Foolish newsletters today, free for 30 days. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.