Wood Group drops in spite of an upbeat trading statement

OIL AND gas services firm John Wood Group said yesterday that it expects to deliver “good growth” for the year in line with expectations, despite a subdued downstream market outlook.

The FTSE 100 firm said in a pre-closing trading statement yesterday that Wood Group PSN was boosted by strong performance in the North Sea and North America, although it added that it expects to lose around $20m (£12.4m) this year on a contract with Petroleum Development Oman.

The seven-year engineering and maintenance contract, worth $800m, was awarded in 2010 to provide energy and petroleum operations in the Arabian Gulf.

The company said that it was taking steps to reduce losses in Oman for 2013, and hopes that the contract will become profitable in 2014.

Meanwhile its engineering division’s core profit was predicted to be up 30 per cent for the full year.

“We anticipate further good growth in 2013 and remain confident in the longer-term prospects,” Wood Group said yesterday.

Despite the upbeat comments, the company was the biggest blue chip faller yesterday, closing down 4.55 per cent at 733.5p.