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Halliburton's First Profit Lower than Expected

Halliburton Co. said its Q1 profit will be lower than expected

Halliburton Co., the world's second-largest oilfield services company, said first-quarter profit will be lower than expected as drilling slows in North America.

The company's shares had their biggest drop in eight months. Halliburton will probably earn between 49 cents and 54 cents a share, the company said yesterday in a statement. It was expected to earn 59.5 cents, according to the average among 17 analysts surveyed by Bloomberg. The lowest estimate was 55 cents.