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The US oil and gas rig count was unchanged this week, according to Baker Hughes, staying at 799 rigs for the week, according to Baker Hughes, but the number of active oil rigs increased.

For oil rigs, this week saw an increase of 4 rigs, stopping a long string of decreases that saw 107 oil rigs fall off the active list over the previous sixteen weeks, and 206 off the active list over the last year.

The total oil and gas rig count is now or 272 down from this time last year.

The total number of active gas rigs in the United States fell by 4 according to the report, reaching 129. This compares to 198 a year ago. 

Even though the number of oil rigs have declined by 210 this year alone, production has grown from 11.7 million bpd at the beginning of the year to an all-time high of 12.9 million bpd,­ for week ending Nov 29, before falling back to 12.8 million bpd for week ending Dec 06.

Oil prices were up on Friday ahead of the data after signs that the trade war between China and the US is closer to a Phase 1 resolution. The WTI benchmark at 12:33pm was $59.96 per barrel, roughly up $0.80 from this time last week, and up $0.78 (+1.32%) on the day. The Brent benchmark was trading up $0.94 (+1.46%) at $65.14, up nearly $1 per barrel from last week’s levels. 

Canada’s overall rig count increased this week, with oil and gas rigs increasing by 15, after last week’s 12-rig increase. Oil and gas rigs in Canada now stand at 153, down 21 year on year. 

At 11 minutes past the hour, WTI was trading at $60.01 and Brent was trading at $65.23.

By Julianne Geiger for Oilprice.com

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Julianne Geiger

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