Schlumberger's Profits Plunge 41% in 2009

Company expects world oil prices to remain a current levels, which are hovering around $75 a barrel

French-U.S. oil services group Schlumberger on Jan. 22 said it suffered a 41% plunge in net profit last year, owing to a drop in world oil prices, but reported an improvement in the final quarter.

Net profit fell to $3.16 billion from $5.39 billion in 2008.

The Houston, Texas-based company's revenue dropped to $22.7 billion last year versus $27.16 billion in 2008, a 16% fall.

But Schlumberger reported an improvement in the last quarter of last year.

The group's net profit reached $817 million in the last three months of 2009, 4% higher than the preceding quarter. But the fourth quarter earnings were 29% lower than the same period in 2008.

Revenue reached $5.74 billion in the fourth quarter compared to $5.43 billion in the previous three-month period, or a 5.8% increase. Revenue in the fourth quarter of 2008 had stood at $6.87 billion..

The company said its outlook for 2010 "remains largely dependent on the prospects for the general economy."

It expects world oil prices to remain a current levels, which are hovering around $75 a barrel, "and that as our customers' confidence grows, their exploration and production budgets will increase."

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2010

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