The number of oil and gas rigs in the United States rose again this week. The boost in the number of active oil rigs this week brings the total gained in November to 10—the first monthly gain since July.
Oil and gas rigs combined were up by 14 in November—also the biggest increase seen since July, in a sign that drillers are once again eager to add rigs after scaling back in August.
This week, the number of active oil rigs increased by 9, with gas rigs falling by 1. The Permian basin, after gaining two rigs this week, now boasts 165 more rigs than this time last year, a staggering 72-percent increase.
The WTI and Brent benchmarks rose earlier today on a small crude oil inventory decline as reported by the EIA, further supported by the Keystone pipeline shutdown that took 600,000 bpd offline. WTI and Brent are both trading at levels not seen since mid-2015.
The total oil and gas rig count in the United States now stands at 923 rigs, up 330 rigs from a year ago—a 55 percent increase. The number of oil rigs stands at 747 versus 474 a year ago (+57 percent). The number of gas rigs in the US now stands at 176, up from 118 a year ago (+49 percent).
WTI was trading up on Wednesday at 1.76 percent at $57.83 at 1:38pm EST. Brent crude was trading up 0.69 percent at $62.75 at that time.
Along with an increase to the number of active oil rigs, US crude oil production was up for the week ending November 17 at 9.648 million barrels per day—another new high for 2017 as new highs are seemingly reached each week.
Baker Hughes released the data early this week due to the Thanksgiving holiday.
By Julianne Geiger for Oilprice.com
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