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article imageExxon expected to announce layoffs in U.S. and Canada

By Karen Graham     Oct 22, 2020 in Business
Exxon is close to completing a workforce assessment for the United States and Canada, after which it will announce the number of people it needs to lay off in response to the crisis caused by the pandemic.
Exxon Mobil Corporation Chief Executive Officer Darren Woods told employees in an email statement on Wednesday the company was "very close" to completing the workforce assessment in North America and will layoff an unspecified number of workers.
“Making the organization more efficient and more nimble will reduce the number of required positions and, unfortunately, reduce the number of people we need,” chief executive Darren Woods said in the statement, per OilPrice.com.
“We all recognize the consequences of these difficult decisions and the impacts they have, which is why we’re focused on getting it right by undertaking thorough and thoughtful assessments by business and by country. We believe a bottom-up assessment is a right approach for our business and employees.”
Exxon has already completed workforce assessments in Europe and Australia. In Europe, the oil giant is planning about 1,500 layoffs, and in Australia, it has offered employees voluntary redundancies. The company has lost nearly $1.7 billion in the first six months of the current fiscal year, and analysts are forecasting a third-quarter $1.17 billion loss, according to IBES data from Refinitiv, reports CBC Canada.
With the global pandemic and the resulting decline in worldwide demand for fuel, some petroleum companies have been forced into bankruptcy, according to Yahoo Finance. Rivals such as BP Plc and Chevron Corp. have also announced large layoffs in recent weeks.
However, in his statement, Woods also appears to be upbeat with regards to the future, despite the current challenges.
“Some believe the dramatic drop in demand resulting from the coronavirus reflects an accelerating response to the risk of climate change and suggests that our industry won’t recover,” he said in the statement. “But as we look closely at the facts and the various expert assessments, we conclude that the needs of society will drive more energy use in the years ahead – and an ongoing need for the products we produce.”
Exxon shares fell 1.6 percent to $33.14 on Wednesday as oil prices declined on worries that the COVID-19 infections are on the rise globally. The stock is trading near an 18-year low.
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