HOUSTON, Feb 16 (Reuters) - Devon Energy Corp, a top U.S. independent oil producer, slashed its 2016 capital spending program 75 percent on Tuesday, announced layoffs for 20 percent of staff, and said production would slip as low prices roil shale oil companies.
The Oklahoma City-based company said it was laying off 1,000 staff and that another 600 employees would leave in divestitures later this year.
The moves by Devon mark the latest in a string of announcements by U.S. oil companies capitulating to oil prices of less than $30 a barrel by cutting spending even more, trimming dividends, or producing less.
Exploration and production spending is estimated to range from $900 million to $1.1 billion this year, a sharp reduction from last year.
Because of less natural gas output, it also said 2016 output would be 6 percent less than overall net production from core assets of 571,000 oil equivalent barrels per day during the fourth quarter.
The company also said that Tony Vaughn, executive vice president of exploration and production, was promoted to chief operating officer under CEO Dave Hager.
Devon reported a net loss of $4.5 billion, for the fourth quarter of 2015, wider than a net loss of $408 million in the same period a year ago.
On an adjusted bases, the company earned 77 cents a share, beating analysts expectations of 70 cents a share consensus view from Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
(Reporting by Terry Wade; Editing by Tom Brown)
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