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Oil, Gas Drilling Activity Slips in the U.S.

The total number of active drilling rigs for oil and gas in the United States fell this week, according to new data that Baker Hughes published on Friday.

The total rig count fell by 4 to 600 this week, compared to 711 rigs this same time last year.

The number of oil rigs stayed the same this week, after rising by 1 in the week prior. Oil rigs stand at 497--down by 73 compared to this time last year. The number of gas rigs fell by 4 this week to 99, a loss of 38 active gas rigs from this time last year. Miscellaneous rigs stayed the same at 4.

Meanwhile, U.S. crude oil production stayed the same for the tenth week in a row at an average of 13.1 million bpd for the week ending May 17-down 200,000 bpd from the all-time high of 13.3 million bpd.

Primary Vision's Frac Spread Count, an estimate of the number of crews completing wells that are unfinished, rose by 5 in the week ending May 17, to 263.

Drilling activity in the Permian stayed the same after falling by 2 in the week prior. The count in the Eagle Ford fell by 1 this week after falling by 1 in the week prior.

Oil prices were trading up on Friday with both benchmarks trading about $0.70 up per barrel. At 12:52 p.m. ET, moments before data release, the WTI benchmark was trading up $0.77 (+1.0%) on the day at $77.64. This is roughly $2 per barrel shy of this same time last week.

The Brent benchmark was trading up $0.70 (+0.86%) at $82.06, roughly $1.50 per barrel below week ago levels.

By Julianne Geiger for

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Julianne Geiger

Julianne Geiger is a veteran editor, writer and researcher for, and a member of the Creative Professionals Networking Group. More