U.S. oil and gas companies this week added oil rigs for a tenth week in a row, extending the drilling recovery into an eighth month as crude prices remained near an 18-month high. Drillers added four oil rigs in the week to Jan. 6, bringing the total count up to 529, the most since December 2015, energy services firm Baker Hughes Inc., said on Friday.
Drillers in the United States have been slowly increasing the number of active drilling rigs, in sync with with the rebounding oil price, most notably since the OPEC agreement on November 30 that saw OPEC agree to cut back production to 32.5 million bpd.
Just how fast the market rebalances will depend on the discipline to enforce and maintain the cuts across a disparate group of oil producers, especially with crisis-ravaged OPEC members Libya and Nigeria exempted from the agreement, but with the potential to see large additions in output.
U.S. investment bank Piper Jaffray, this week forecast the total oil and natural gas rig count would average 763 in 2017 and 877 in 2018. That compares with 648 oil and gas rigs at the end of 2016. The average number of oil and gas rigs active each week in 2016 was 509 versus 978 in 2015, according to Baker Hughes data.
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Compiled and Published by GIB KNIGHT
Gib Knight is a private oil and gas investor and consultant, providing clients advanced analytics and building innovative visual business intelligence solutions to visualize the results, across a broad spectrum of regulatory filings and production data in Oklahoma and Texas. He is the founder of OklahomaMinerals.com, an online resource designed for mineral owners in Oklahoma. ☞Email:[email protected]