September 5, 2018 / 1:02 PM / 2 months ago

UPDATE 1-Halliburton sees 8-10 ct EPS hit in 3rd qtr from Permian hitch

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By Liz Hampton

Sept 5 (Reuters) - Oilfield services provider Halliburton Co expects moderating activity in the Permian Basin and a slower-than-expected ramp-up of new Middle East contracts to hurt third-quarter profit by 8 cents to 10 cents per share, its chief executive officer said on Wednesday.

Pipeline bottlenecks, a tight labor market and inflation are slowing activity in the largest U.S. shale basin, CEO Jeff Miller said at a Barclays conference in New York. The slowdown threatens to undermine a recovery in the oilfield services sector, which was hit hard by the 2014 downturn in oil prices.

"We have more white space on our calendar than expected. This creates pricing pressure," he said.

Halliburton is also experiencing a slower-than-anticipated ramp-up of new contracts in the Middle East, which will affect its third-quarter earnings, Miller said.

Halliburton shares were down 2.4 percent to $38.55 in premarket trading.

Halliburton is a leading supplier of hydraulic fracturing services in the United States, which had put it in a good position to capitalize on a recovery in benchmark oil prices to near $70 a barrel.

However, more producers are opting to hold off completing wells as local prices in the Permian fall to near four-year lows, diminishing demand for those services.

On Tuesday, rival Schlumberger NV warned that the hydraulic fracturing market had softened more than expected.

Reporting by Liz Hampton in Houston Editing by Chizu Nomiyama and Jeffrey Benkoe

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