StockMarketWire.com - Engineering company Wood Group swung to a first-half loss and scrapped its interim dividend after its oil services business was hurt by a sharp fall in crude prices.

Net losses for the six months through June amounted to $10.5m, compared to a profit of $13.1m on-year.

Revenue slumped 15% to $4.09bn and operating profit before exceptional items fell 40% to $101m.

'We are benefitting from our broader market exposure and have seen relative resilience in two thirds of our revenue which is derived from chemicals & downstream, renewables and built environment markets,' chief executive Robin Watson said.

'We have successfully protected margins, and delivered trading performance at the upper end of guidance while reducing net debt as a result of portfolio optimisation and steps taken to protect cashflow.'

'Our objectives are to maintain full year margins in line with 2019 and deliver strong cashflow to further reduce debt in the second half.'

Net debt excluding leases was reduced to $1.22bn at 30 June, down from $1.77bn a year earlier, following disposal proceeds and steps taken to protect cashflow.

The company's order book at 30 June stood at $7.0bn, down 16% on June 2019 on a like-for-like basis.




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