Halliburton ( HAL) said Monday that an increase in activity in North America and in the Eastern Hemisphere boosted its third-quarter net income by 19%. The energy-services giant earned $729 million, or 79 cents a share, in the latest quarter, up from $611 million, or 58 cents a share, during the same period a year earlier. Halliburton generated $3.9 billion in revenue, up 16% from the third quarter of 2006. Included in the most recent third-quarter results were a boost from a $133 million tax credit and charges of $21 million. Excluding the gain from the tax credit, Halliburton's adjusted profit matched the analyst consensus estimate of 64 cents that was projected by Thomson Financial. CEO Dave Lesar said during a conference call that a strong performance in the eastern half of the globe and record quarterly revenue in North America were mostly responsible for the quarter's growth. "Our deployment of capital into
international markets has resulted in Eastern Hemisphere revenue growth of 29% and operating income growth of 40% as compared to the third quarter of 2006," Lesar said in a press statement. Halliburton's solid North American results also provided a contrast with figures released last week by Schlumberger ( SLB), which said its results in the same region were weaker than expected during its third quarter. The Schlumberger announcement had weighed heavily on the entire oil-services sector Friday.
A highlight of the quarter was the signing of a deal to collaborate with Mexican oil firm Pemex on a series of projects over the next three years that will generate $1 billion in revenue for Halliburton. In part because of the Pemex contract, Lesar said that his team expects revenue from Halliburton's operations in Latin America to grow by 20% in 2008. Chief Operating Officer Andrew Lane said during the conference call that Halliburton's business in Russia showed strong growth in the third quarter, and he forecast that its operations there would continue to grow at a 20% annual clip over the next several years. Halliburton purchased approximately 11 million shares at a total cost of $374 million during the quarter. It has repurchased roughly $2.6 billion in stock so far, and it plans to buy back an additional $2.4 billion in future quarters. Additionally, executives from Halliburton said during the call that the company has completed a corporate restructuring program that placed its various businesses into two operating segments -- completion and production and drilling and evaluation. Shares of Halliburton were recently trading fractionally higher at $38.92.