The United States oil and natural gas rig count increased by 10 over the past week, according to Baker Hughes latest weekly report.
The new numbers mark the first time the oil rig count has exceeded 400 rigs since February.
At 83, gas rigs showed no change from last week’s figure, however, oil rigs rose in number by 10 to 406, marking the 8th straight week of growth for the oil count.
One year ago, oil rigs were 674 strong, while the gas count stood at 211.
North Dakota, the state home to America’s most recent oil boom, lost two rigs this week and New Mexico lost one.
The largest gains occurred in Texas - particularly in the Permian Basin - where eight new rigs became operational over the past seven days and Pennsylvania reopened two sites. Texas saw the largest additions last week as well.
By basin, the Cana-Woodford Shale site in Oklahoma and the Marcellus Formation in New England each added three rigs.
Image source: Zerohedge.com
Oil prices have taken a slight hit since markets opened Friday morning when Brent started out at $50.96 a barrel. At 1:33 EST, a barrel traded for $50.64.
Last week’s rig count saw the largest jump in the American natural gas and oil rig count for all of 2016.
As was the case this week, most of the gains occurred in the oil sector last week, which saw a 15 rig spike. Two new gas rigs went into production as well.
The seven weeks of consecutive rig count increases could signal a recovering drilling economy despite the ongoing price pressures.
By Zainab Calcuttawala for Oilprice.com
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I'd start worrying if you start to see the Bakken and Eagle Ford pick up. Get a lot more from wells there than the Permian. But, for the most part, those 2 areas have still been struggling to do much even with oil around $50.