By May 19, 2017 Read More →

US rig count rises for 18th week in a row: Baker Hughes

rig count

Baker Hughes reports the US rig count of gas and oil rigs is up by 16 to 901. Anadarko photo.

US oil rig count up by 8

On Friday, the Baker Hughes rig count showed the number of oil rigs in the United States rose for the 18th straight week in a row, the second-longest streak of weekly additions on record.

In the week ending May 19, drillers added eight oil rigs, bringing the total count to 720, the highest since April, 2015.  Drillers also added eight natural gas rigs.

In Canada, the number of oil rigs grew by seven to sit at 36.

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This past week, US crude futures rebounded, trading around $50 on Friday, putting the front-month contract on track for two straight weeks of gains as OPEC considers expanding its supply cut agreement for as long as an additional nine months.

OPEC and non-cartel members participating in the pact are scheduled to meet in Vienna next week to discuss the possible extension of the deal.  Saudi Arabia, Russia and some other participating countries have voiced strong support for an expanded agreement.

US shale production is expected to continue to rise and in June, the US Energy Information Administration says output is expected to hit 5.4 million barrels per day (b/d), the highest since May 2015.

This week, analysts at Simmons & Co, and energy specialists at Piper Jaffray forecast the total oil and gas rig count would average 862 in 2017, 1,067 in 2018 and 1,184 in 2019.  Most wells produce both oil and gas.

According to Reuters, that compares with an average of 786 so far in 2017, 509 in 2016 and 978 in 2015.

The rig count peaked in 2012 at 1,919, according to Baker Hughes data that goes back to 1988.







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