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Julianne Geiger

Julianne Geiger

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

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U.S. Rig Count Ticks Higher As Oil Prices Head For Another Weekly Gain

The number of total active drilling rigs in the United States rose by 7 this week, after an increase of 3 rigs in the week prior, according to new data from Baker Hughes published on Friday.

The total rig count increased to 705 this week—257 rigs higher than the rig count this time in 2021. Drilling has picked up substantially since the Russia invasion, adding 55 rigs over the last ten weeks.

Oil rigs in the United States rose this week by 5 rigs to 557, while gas rigs rose by 2 to 146. Miscellaneous rigs stayed the same, at 2.

The rig count in the Permian Basin remained the same this week at 335, as did rigs in the Eagle Ford at 61.   

U.S. crude oil production held steady at 11.9 million bpd during the week ending April 29, according to the latest Energy Information Administration—a 300,000 bpd rise since the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Costs for drillers have risen in the U.S. shale patch—just one of many factors preventing U.S. drillers from ramping up production quickly.

U.S. shale producers have been reluctant to ramp up drilling and instead have opted to reward shareholders with buybacks and dividends; however, indications are that more production is underway, with Chevron announcing a week ago that it would ramp up production at its biggest oilfield, along with other producers, including Continental, Hess and Matador. 

At 1:30 p.m. EST, oil prices were heading for their second straight week of gains, with Russian oil declines, OPEC resistance to substantial output quota increases and sanctions in a tight market outweighing Chinese economic data that could drive down demand. 

WTI was trading at $110.08—up $1.27 per barrel, up 2.34% on the day. The Brent benchmark was trading at $113.2 per barrel, up 2.14% on the day.

By Julianne Geiger for Oilprice.com

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