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Julianne Geiger

Julianne Geiger

Julianne Geiger is a veteran editor, writer and researcher for US-based Divergente LLC consulting firm, and a member of the Creative Professionals Networking Group.

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Oil Prices Slip As The U.S. Rig Count Continues To Climb

The number of active oil and gas rigs in the United States rose by 8 on Friday, according to oilfield services provider Baker Hughes.

The total oil and gas rig count in the U.S. now stands at 885 rigs, or 479 above the count a year ago.

Oil rigs increased by 9, while gas rigs fell by 1.

At 12:16pm EST, WTI was trading down 0.23 percent for the day at $47.72, while Brent Crude traded down just 0.04 percent at $50.75—picking up about a $1.50 per barrel from last Friday after the Energy Information Administration (EIA) reported earlier in the week a decrease in both crude oil and gasoline inventories, and after reports that OPEC had reached a consensus on a possible extension of its production cut deal, which may be extended into 2018. This optimism was offset to some degree by reports that Libya—which is exempt from the OPEC deal—had increased its oil production to 780,000 barrels per day, and reports that Nigeria expects to reopen its Trans Forcados Pipeline this week.

This week marks the seventeenth straight build for oil rigs (+190 or +36.4 percent since January 13). Gas rigs have climbed 11 of the last seventeen weeks, for a total gain of 36 (+26.5 percent).

By basin, the Permian was the big winner this week, with 8 rigs added to its total. Cana Woodford added 2 rigs, and Granite Wash, Utica, and Williston basins each added one rig. Arkoma Woodford and the Mississippian basin each lost a rig.

Shortly after data release, both benchmarks started to slip further, with WTI trading at $47.59 or -0.5 percent and Brent trading at $50.61, down 0.32 percent.

By Julianne Geiger for Oilprice.com

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