[NEW YORK] Job hiring in the US energy industry will likely slow in the first half of this year as tumbling oil prices force oil and gas producers to cut spending, according to a survey conducted by industry data provider Rigzone.
Forty-four per cent of the 114 US oil and gas hiring managers surveyed anticipated hiring less in the first half of 2015 compared with the second half of 2014. Five per cent said they would not hire at all and 22 per cent said they expected to hire more.
In the last survey conducted six months earlier when oil prices were double what they are now, 48 per cent said they expected to hire more.
"The shift in outlook underscores how quickly companies are adjusting their plans to the current economy with many oil and gas firms bracing for what could be a difficult 2015," said Bob Melk, President of Rigzone.
"Companies are watching falling oil prices and putting a pause on some hiring plans as a result."
During the past seven months, oil prices have plunged, falling from above US$115 a barrel to just US$46.