US seeks data on fracking business from companies

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Associated Press

Posted on July 25, 2013 at 3:02 PM

HOUSTON (AP) — Federal officials have contacted Halliburton Co. and Baker Hughes Inc. as part of an antitrust investigation into an oil and gas drilling process used in hydraulic fracturing, or fracking.

Halliburton spokeswoman Beverly Blohm Stafford said Thursday that the company received what's called a civil investigative demand from the Justice Department's antitrust division during the April-to-June quarter and is responding to the request.

Baker Hughes disclosed the investigation in a regulatory filing late Wednesday. It says the Justice Department requested information under an antitrust law for two years' worth of material in late May.

Neither company gave any details about the information requested by the government. Justice Department officials did not immediately return a call for comment

Fracking has helped spur oil and gas production but come under fire from environmentalists.

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