BUSINESS
07/18/2011 08:12 am ET | Updated Sep 17, 2011

Halliburton Profit Jumps 54 Percent Amid U.S. Drilling Boom

Halliburton Co (HAL.N), the world's second-largest oilfield services company, reported a forecast-topping 54 percent jump in quarterly profit on Monday as a U.S. drilling boom showed no signs of cooling off.

High oil prices have prompted energy producers to plunge billions of dollars into developing liquids-rich fields such as Texas' Eagle Ford shale rather than gas fields, a move that allowed Halliburton to push through price increases in the quarter.

That boom was likely to last beyond this year, the company said.

"Strong crude prices, operators' improved cash flows combined with their ability to access capital, and the increasingly liquids-rich nature of the United States land market, give us continued confidence in the strength of North America through 2012," Chief Executive and Chairman Dave Lesar said in a statement.

Second-quarter net profit climbed to $739 million, or 80 cents per share, from $480 million, or 53 cents per share, a year earlier.

Excluding one-time items, the company earned 81 cents per share, topping the 74 cents per share that analysts had on average forecast, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Revenue rose 35 percent to $5.9 billion and came in above the average analyst forecast of $5.71 billion.

Shares in Halliburton were up 17 cents at $53.25 per share in premarket trading

(Reporting by Matt Daily in New York and Braden Reddall in San Francisco; Editing by Derek Caney)

Copyright 2011 Thomson Reuters. Click for Restrictions.