Marathon Oil lays off 200 employees as drilling permits dry up


Marathon Oil, one of the largest drillers in the Eagle Ford Shale of South Texas, had laid off 200 employees as record low oil prices continue to sting the industry.

The Houston exploration and production company confirmed in the layoffs in a Thursday afternoon statement, noting that the lay off were primarily aimed at non-operations and support jobs.

“Marathon Oil confirms that it has made the strategic decision to reduce its organizational footprint in response to extremely low commodity prices and much lower oil demand due to COVID-19,” said. “As a company, we’ve dramatically cut our 2020 capital program, reduced activity across our U.S. operations, and completed other necessary cost-cutting measures.”

Historic Downturn: 2,500 oil & gas jobs lost in 10 days

The Houston oil company started the year with 2,000 employees, a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission shows. The company has operations in the Eagle Ford, the New Mexico side of the Permian Basin, the Scoop/Stack play of Oklahoma and the Bakken Shale of North Dakota

Considered to be the fourth most active driller in the Eagle Ford, Marathon filed 155 drilling permits for projects in the region last year. The company has filed for 39 so far this year and stopped filing new ones after April 8.

Shutdowns related to the coronavirus pandemic have created a global supply glut of crude oi, storage tanks to fill up and prices to sink. West Texas Intermediate, the U.S. benchmark for crude oil, went below zero last week and has since stayed below $20 per barrel.

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