U.S. job losses in oilfield services and equipment top 100,000: trade group

FILE PHOTO: Drilling rigs operate at sunset in Midland, Texas U.S. February 13, 2019. Picture taken February 13, 2019. REUTERS/Nick Oxford/File Photo

(Reuters) – Oilfield job losses from the COVID-19 pandemic topped 100,000 in the United States in August, according to a report released on Tuesday by trade group Petroleum Equipment & Services Association (PESA), even though some idled drilling projects have resumed.

There was 121,000 oilfield jobs lost in the last 12 months, the report said, with employment in the U.S. sector at its lowest level since March 2017. The bulk of those job losses, 103,420, have come since the pandemic began, the report said.

U.S. crude futures on Tuesday were trading about $37 a barrel, below the cost of production for many U.S. producers. Shale production was 7.6 million barrels per day (bpd) in August, down from 9.2 million bpd in February, before the pandemic crushed fuel demand,

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Oil-field service sector sheds more than 103,000 jobs during pandemic

The oil-field service sector has lost more than 103,400 jobs nationally during the coronavirus pandemic, dragging service employment to the lowest level since the last oil bust of 2014-16.



a group of people on a boat: A BJ Services frack crew operates on a well site near Eunice, New Mexico, in January 2020. The oil-field service sector has lost more than 103,400 jobs nationally during the coronavirus pandemic, dragging service employment to the lowest level since the last oil bust in 2017.


© The Oilfield Photographer Inc. / The Oilfield Photographer, Inc.

A BJ Services frack crew operates on a well site near Eunice, New Mexico, in January 2020. The oil-field service sector has lost more than 103,400 jobs nationally during the coronavirus pandemic, dragging service employment to the lowest level since the last oil bust in 2017.


Oil-field service companies shed just 2,600 jobs in August, a sign that job losses in the sector are slowing since the worst of the crude demand destruction in spring. April saw the heaviest job losses totalling more than 58,300 jobs, the largest one-month drop in employment since at least 2013, according to a new report from the Petroleum Equipment & Services Association.

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