Oil drilling rigs down five, gas up two

Drilling activity decreased in the U.S. this week, as activity pulled back slightly from the large increase seen last week, according to Baker Hughes’ Rig Count.

Three rigs shut down this week, bringing the total U.S. rig count to 936. All three rigs that shut down were land-based rigs, as inland waters and offshore rigs were unchanged. There are now 916 land, one inland waters and 19 offshore rigs active in the U.S.

Activity shifted away from oil drilling, as the number of oil-targeting rigs fell by five. Two gas-targeting rigs came online, giving a total of 747 oil and 189 gas rigs currently operational. Oil now makes up 79.8% of all activity, down from 81.4% in November, but still well above the overall average of 43%.

Operations shifted in favor of directional drilling this week, and directional rigs now outnumber vertical rigs by 20, the largest margin ever. Five directional rigs came online, while three horizontal and five vertical rigs shut down this week. There are now 77 directional, 802 horizontal and 57 vertical rigs operating in the U.S.

Most major states tracked by Baker saw changes in rig counts this week, as operations shifted around significantly. Three rigs came online in Wyoming, while two began drilling in West Virginia. One became active in Louisiana, New Mexico, Pennsylvania and Texas, while one shut down in Alaska, North Dakota and Utah. Significant decreases were seen in Colorado and Ohio, each state saw four rigs shut down in the week.

Permian count up by six

Increases in operations were concentrated in the Permian this week, as the basin’s rig count increased by six. Three rigs came online in the Marcellus, which is beginning to pull ahead of the Haynesville once again. One rig came offline in the Granite Wash and Williston, two shut down in the Barnett, Cana Woodford and DJ-Niobrara, and three stopped activities in the Eagle Ford.


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