Halliburton Keeps Getting Paid

Halliburton, the oil services company once run by former vice-president Dick Cheney, doubled its profits in the last quarter of 2010, even as the US government tarred it with “systemic failures” in the BP Deepwater Horizon drilling disaster.

Higher crude prices and demand for drilling equipment boosted net income to $605 million from $243 million a year earlier. Sales in North America were the largest source of revenue, rising 83% to $2.63 billion even as its Gulf of Mexico operations reported a loss. Halliburton said a recovery in the number of rigs operating in the Gulf remains “uncertain” this year.

Earlier this month the presidential commission investigating the BP disaster slammed Halliburton, along with BP and rig owner Transocean. “Given the documented failings of both Transocean and Halliburton, both of which serve the offshore industry in virtually every ocean, I reluctantly conclude we have a system-wide problem,” said William Reilly, co-chairman of the commission.

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