The plunging price of oil has taken its toll on one of the world’s largest oil companies: Britain’s BP announced Wednesday it would cuts some of its 84,000-member worldwide workforce, as well as take $1 billion in charges over the next five quarters.
The New York Times reports that most of the financial hit will come in the form of severance pay, indicating that the number of job cuts could be significant. The company didn’t say how many positions it intended to shed.
The price of Brent crude has fallen some 40 percent since June. The price per barrel dropped another 1.5 percent Wednesday, to $65.32.
Bloomberg reports that BP’s move is the latest to come amid the price squeeze:
Europe’s third-biggest oil company by market value joins larger rivals Royal Dutch Shell Plc and Total SA in restricting budgets and offloading operations as margins are squeezed by the 40 percent drop in prices since June. BP said in October that about $1 billion to $2 billion may be cut from the $24 billion to $26 billion of planned capital expenditure in 2015.