Layoffs hit the oil patch again as ConocoPhillips makes cuts
Published Monday, September 12, 2016 4:47PM MDT
Last Updated Monday, September 12, 2016 6:46PM MDT
ConocoPhillips announced in July that it would cut 1000 staff around the world, 300 of them from Calgary, and has now followed through.
The company said in July that Canada is looking less attractive due to low oil prices, lack of pipelines, increased corporate and property taxes and regulatory compliance costs.
Experts say even though the price of oil is starting to stabilize, the tough times for the industry are not over yet.
“I think we're bracing for more layoffs coming from the oil patch but more so from some of the peripheral industries, things like construction, manufacturing and professional business services,” said Todd Hirsch, ATB Chief Economist. “I think we're moving into what will be in hindsight the deepest, darkest days of the recession.”
As compensation packages and unemployment benefits dry up for those laid off in the first wave of cuts, Hirsch says expect even more pain across the board.
“I think we'll see added strain on consumer spending, things like retail, the bar and restaurant sector, possibly the housing market as some of those families really start running out of cash and resources in that way,” he said.
Hirsch says Alberta should emerge from the recession in 2017, but with weak annual economic growth, the recovery will be very slow.
The Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers estimates at least 44,000 direct jobs have been lost in the oil and gas industry since the downturn started.