What have you always wondered about the economy? Tell us

Halliburton’s (exclusive) gig is up

Hillary Wicai Jul 12, 2006


SCOTT JAGOW: Many American soldiers overseas depend on Halliburton for something. A hot meal, the latrine, phone calls back home . . . but critics say Halliburton’s been bilking the US government with its exclusive contract. And now the Army has decided to end the deal and hand over those services to three companies. More now from Hillary Wicai.

HILLARY WICAI: Just last year, Halliburton subsidiary Kellogg Brown and Root made $7 billion providing logistical support for the Army. But Halliburton’s taken some hits. There have been accusations of grossly overcharging for basic services.

Winslow Wheeler is with the Center for Defense Information. He says the news is overdue. And it should ease the budget cut concerns of other major defense contractors.

WINSLOW WHEELER:“One of the motivators for cutting up the pie is that other contractors like Lockheed and Boeing are looking at the possibility of doing this. They’re not seeing too bright a future in hardware procurement contracting with DOD.”

The Pentagon has said it hopes to get better prices, more accountability and some flexibility if one of the companies doesn’t work out.

DOD will hire a fourth company to monitor the work of the others. Halliburton will be able to bid on the new contracts, which will be awarded this fall.

In Washington, I’m Hillary Wicai for Marketplace.

Marketplace is on a mission.

We believe Main Street matters as much as Wall Street, economic news is made relevant and real through human stories, and a touch of humor helps enliven topics you might typically find…well, dull.

Through the signature style that only Marketplace can deliver, we’re on a mission to raise the economic intelligence of the country—but we don’t do it alone. We count on listeners and readers like you to keep this public service free and accessible to all. Will you become a partner in our mission today?

Your donation is critical to the future of public service journalism. Support our work today – for as little as $5 – and help us keep making people smarter.