WorleyParsons shares slide on earnings downgrade

By a staff reporter

WorleyParsons Ltd has downgraded its full-year earnings forecast as a softening in demand for resource infrastructure weighs on the West Australian business.

In a statement to the Australian Securities Exchange, the group said it expects to report a net profit after tax (NPAT) in the range of $320 million to $340 million compared to FY2012 underlying earnings of $345.6 million.

At its half-yearly results WorleyParsons said only that it continued "to expect growth for FY2013 on FY2012 underlying earnings".

Chief executive Andrew Wood said softening demand for resource infrastructure in Western Australia, and major cost cutting by resources companies, had impacted its business.

Its construction business in Canada, WorleyParsonsCord, will also make a smaller profit than expected because of a softening in construction activity in the Canadian oil sands market.

But he said other WorleyParsons businesses would be able to make up for some of the lower than expected profits.

"While Western Australia and WorleyParsonsCord have underperformed, a number of regions are performing strongly, particularly the United States, Canada and China," Mr Wood said in a statement.

WorleyParsons services the oil and gas, power, mining and infrastructure industries.

At 1015 AEST, WorleyParsons shares shed 12.92 per cent to $19.41 against a benchmark index rise of 0.29 per cent.

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