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OSX Rallies After Batista Company Fires 300 to Reduce Costs

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May 23 (Bloomberg) -- OSX Brasil SA, the billionaire Eike Batista’s provider of equipment and services to the oil and gas industry, rose to its highest level this month after more than 300 employees were fired to cut costs.

Shares of the Rio de Janeiro-based company climbed 1 percent to 3.09 reais at 4:36 p.m. in Sao Paulo, the highest level on a closing basis since April 29. They earlier added 6.9%, extending the three-day advance to 31 percent, the biggest such gain on record. The BM&FBovespa Small Cap index declined 0.2 percent today.

The firings are part of a plan to cut costs and increase revenue that OSX announced on May 17, the newspaper O Estado de S. Paulo reported yesterday, citing a statement by the company that said it now has 260 employees compared with 575 in March.

“It’s very clear that the company is committed to effectively executing the measures it disclosed, which should help to improve profitability,” Sandro Fernandes, a trader at Corval Corretora de Valores SA, said in a telephone interview from Belo Horizonte, Brazil.

The layoffs began in mid-April, OSX said in an e-mailed statement to Bloomberg News, confirming 315 dismissals. The company will slow construction of the Acu shipyard, according to the statement.

OSX posted net losses in four of the past five years, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Its shares have lost 71 percent in 2013, while the small-cap index has slid 2 percent during the same period.

To contact the reporter on this story: Denyse Godoy in Sao Paulo at dgodoy2@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: David Papadopoulos at papadopoulos@bloomberg.net