Adds background, details from earnings
Oct 27 (Reuters) - Liberty Oilfield Services LBRT.N posted a quarterly loss on Tuesday compared with a year-ago profit, as demand for its fracking services dropped due to a coronavirus-led crash in crude prices.
Producers have been drilling fewer wells following a collapse in crude oil prices this year, forcing companies that supply rigs and other tools to the U.S. oil industry to cut thousand of jobs and trim salaries to weather the downturn.
However, Liberty, which in September agreed to buy Schlumberger's SLB.N shale fracking business, said it expects fourth quarter average active fleets, excluding the acquisition, to rise over 20% sequentially.
"While the COVID-19 pandemic will continue to bring uncertainty in global oil demand in the months ahead, incremental monthly improvement in completions activity from a low point in May is a welcome sign of progress," Liberty said.
The Denver-based company's net loss attributable to shareholders stood at $34.5 million, or 41 cents per share, in the third quarter ended Sept. 30, compared with a profit of $11 million, or 15 cents per share, a year earlier.
Revenue slumped over 70% to $147.5 million.
(Reporting by Arundhati Sarkar in Bengaluru; Editing by Vinay Dwivedi)
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