At the end of 2018, the low price of oil created consumer relief at the gas pump and with home oil heating bills. But for companies making less money exporting crude, times have been tough.

At the beginning of 2019, Saudi Arabia said it would cut back on exports in order to help correct the market, and Venezuela's political situation led to the the U.S. placing sanctions.

Now, as the oil market continues to settle into a new year, and as oil companies with exposure to Venezuela deal with new sanctions, we take a look at the hiring trends of a few oilfield services companies that play a role in petroleum production.

Halliburton ($HAL)

Halliburton ended its fourth fiscal quarter forecasting a concerning revenue outlook from its North American clients that are pulling back on drilling efforts. Since June, Halliburton put up 400 less job openings, with a January dip — which is seen in the previous two years — putting the number of listings as low as 599. It also has exposure to Venezuelan receivables, as it reported write-offs during 2018.

Weatherford ($WFT)

Weatherford, another Houston-based oil field service company, saw a massive drop in openings during September, but is now at pre-July numbers. Shares of the company have swung wildly to begin 2019, and recently, the company declined to comment on the recent Venezuela sanctions. During the fourth quarter of 2017, Weatherford took a $230 million write-down on Venezuelan receivables.

Baker Hughes ($NYSE:BHGE)

Baker Hughes, a General Electric ($GE) company, is still seeing an increase in job openings despite having a multimillion-dollar customer in Venezuela. 

While not all oilfield companies with exposure to the sanctioned South America country are hurting, the lasting effect of these sanctions may come back to hurt the industry at large.

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