September 25, 2012 / 9:36 PM / in 5 years

Weatherford gets extension for 2nd-quarter reporting deadline

Sept 25 (Reuters) - Oilfield services company Weatherford International Ltd has been given more time to work out tax structure problems that have already led to more than $800 million in additional expenses spread over the past five years.

The Swiss SIX exchange, where Weatherford is listed along with its New York Stock Exchange listing, granted the company’s request to extend the due date for publishing its earnings report for the first half of 2012 by two months to Nov. 30.

“This postponement follows previously announced agreed extensions of Weatherford’s due date for providing its final second-quarter results to its lenders and debtholders,” the company said in a statement on Tuesday.

Weatherford also set a date of Nov. 13 for a conference call to discuss its third-quarter results, which is a few weeks later than usual.

Shares of the company, which had fallen nearly 4 percent on Tuesday prior to the post-market disclosure of the earnings report delay, have been weighed down by the accounting uncertainty. Weatherford has shed 14 percent so far in 2012, compared with a 5 percent drop for Baker Hughes Inc.

Weatherford said in July it had found about $100 million in tax-related expenses for previous periods, on top of between $225 million and $250 million of adjustments announced in February for the tax years 2007 to 2010.

That was on top of $500 million of tax adjustments announced in March 2011 for the previous four years.

John Briscoe, who took over as chief financial officer in March, said in July he expected the tax accounting remediation to be complete by the end of this year.

Last Friday, the SIX exchange said it was investigating executive share transactions at Weatherford that analysts said were due to administrative lapses and would lead to only minimal fines.

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