A new forecast by Goldman Sachs projects that after a grueling year-long downturn, the oil industry will add between 80,000 and 100,000 jobs by the end of 2018.
Goldman’s projection relies upon the assumption that more oil fields will be drilled in the United States, which would require people to do the inherent drilling, well completion, and other logistical work involved.
Up to this point, low oil prices have led to the loss of nearly 170,000 jobs in the oil and gas industry since late 2014, as companies have looked to cut costs. Many oil firms have faced the prospect of becoming bankrupt.
Although oil production nearly doubled from April 2011 to April 2015, which marked a 44-year high in terms of output, April 2016 saw a significant decline from the prior record-breaking year.
Falling energy prices in the past two years have caused a diverse set of firms to engage in mass layoffs of individuals, including Schlumberger, Halliburton, and Chevron.
Nevertheless, Goldman believes that firm faith in the ability of oil production to regain steam could lead to 700 oil rigs being manufactured by 2018— each rig can support somewhere between 120 and 150 employees, on average.
Since the wide cuts in employment, many former oil workers have taken up work in construction, which is considerably less lucrative. Many individuals with niche skill sets tailored towards the oil industry have had difficulty finding decent replacement employment.
It should be noted that during oil’s last boom— between mid-2009 and late 2014— an estimated 233,000 jobs were created, despite the recession.