News roundup: HP expands job cuts by 2,000 … Transocean in talks for four new deepwater rigs … Iran finding ways around oil sale sanctions
Hard times: Hewlett-Packard is planning to cut about 2,000 more jobs than it had previously announced, as CEO Meg Whitman tries to turn the company around. In a regulatory filing today, the computer and printer maker says it will cut 29,000 jobs by October 2014, up from the 27,000 cuts it announced in May. It didn't explain why it had raised the number, but as before, it expects some of the job cuts to come through an early retirement program. Last month, HP posted the largest loss in its 73-year history, having been hit hard by the shift in technology spending from PCs and printers toward cell phones and tablets.
Going deep: Transocean is in discussions with an integrated oil company for the construction of four new ultra-deepwater drillships, which will cost about $3 billion, the company announced this morning—just hours after saying it would sell 38 shallow-water drilling rigs for about $1 billion, The Houston Chronicle reports. Each new rig will be contracted with the oil company for 10 years, following the expected start of operation in 2015 and 2016, according to SEC filings. Transocean has estimated the new contracts for operating the rigs could total $7.6 billion.
Where there's a will: To continue selling crude oil to India, Iran is accepting payment in rice, medicine, engineering supplies and steel. To sell to China, its No. 1 customer, Iran is delivering the oil on its own tankers backed by state insurance, not on the commercial tankers used in the past. Japan remains so eager to buy from Tehran that the government in Tokyo is furnishing the multibillion-dollar marine insurance its ships need to carry Iranian crude. Despite what U.S. officials call some of the toughest economic sanctions ever imposed, Tehran is finding legal ways to sell or barter oil to its most important markets in Asia. The Los Angeles Times has the full story here.
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