Baker Hughes Inc. (BHI) posted a first-quarter profit that was nearly unchanged from the year earlier as challenges in its North American pressure pumping business tamped down margins and overshadowed revenue that exceeded expectations.
The oilfield services company has faced a difficult adjustment recently as energy customers shaken by rock-bottom natural gas prices pull back on drilling for the commodity.
Baker Hughes last month warned its first-quarter operating earnings would decline from the fourth quarter, saying the continued shift of U.S. rig activity to oil and liquids-rich basins has cut into fleet utilization, lowered pricing and increased its costs for personnel and logistics.
For the first quarter, the company reported a profit of $379 million, or 86 cents a share, compared with a year-earlier profit of $381 million, or 87 cents a share.
Revenue rose 18% to $5.36 billion. Analysts were looking for earnings of 80 cents a share on $5.23 billion in revenue, according to a poll conducted by Thomson Reuters.
Operating margin narrowed to 11.7% from 14.1% as total costs and expenses climbed 22% to $4.73 billion.
Revenue from North America, its largest segment, was jumped 21% to $2.86 billion, although the business posted a lower pre-tax profit than the year earlier.
Shares closed Monday at $41.07 and were inactive premarket. The stock has is down 16% since the start of the year.
-By Mia Lamar, Dow Jones Newswires; 212-416-3207; firstname.lastname@example.org