UPDATE 1-Busy global oilfields shield Halliburton from weak US
July 22 (Reuters) - Halliburton Co, the world's second-largest oilfield services company, posted higher-than-expected quarterly profit as it made more headway outside its home U.S. market, which has been turned upside down by a natural gas glut.
The company also said on Monday it will boost its share repurchase program by $4.3 billion after buying $1 billion worth of its own shares in the second quarter, and leaving only $700 million authorized from its existing program set up in 2006.
Chief Executive Dave Lesar said the refreshed $5 billion program reflected growing confidence in the business outlook.
Halliburton shares rose 1.7 percent to $46.60 in premarket trading.
The company reported a decline in second-quarter profit to $679 million, or 73 cents per share, from $737 million, or 79 cents per share, a year ago. But analysts expected a profit of 72 cents per share, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S. Revenue rose 1 percent to $7.3 billion.
"Relative to our primary competitors, we have delivered leading year-over-year international revenue growth for five consecutive quarters," Lesar said in a statement.
On Friday, sector leader Schlumberger Ltd posted higher-than-expected earnings on greater international exposure, in stark contrast to U.S.-anchored Baker Hughes Inc.
In its home market, Houston-based Halliburton said its profit margins improved despite the collapse in pricing for hydraulic fracturing services, and with oilfield activity only showing early signs of recovery.