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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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Oil Rigs Hold Steady While Oil Prices Continue to Sink

It’s business as—almost--usual in the United States, even after a fifth week of faltering oil prices as the coronavirus outbreak eats away at oil demand and strikes fear in the oil market, leading one to wonder when the low oil prices will catch up with US drillers. 

Baker Hughes reported that the number of oil and gas rigs in the US held fast this week at 790, but the total oil and gas rig has fallen 259 over the last 52 weeks.

The number of oil rigs increased for the week, by 1 rig, according to Baker Hughes data, bringing the total to 676—a 178-rig loss year over year.

The total number of active gas rigs in the United States fell by 1 according to the report, to 111. This compares to 195 a year ago. 

Meanwhile, oil production slipped back to 12.9 million bpd after hovering at 13 million for three weeks, according to data provided by the Energy Information Administration—a high for the United States.

By basin, the number of rigs in the most prolific basin, the Permian, fell this week to 405, compared to 478 rigs one year ago. The second largest basin, the Eagle Ford, saw no change in the number of active rigs.

The WTI benchmark at 1:09pm was $50.49 (-0.90%) per barrel—roughly $1 per barrel below last week levels as travel restrictions within, to, and from China continues to threaten oil demand. The Brent benchmark was trading at $54.61 (-0.58%)—roughly $2 per barrel below last week’s levels.  Oil prices were stubbornly low, even after OPEC+ suggested that the group may cut an additional 600,000 bpd, and even after Libya continues to experience a production loss of 1 million bpd.

Canada’s overall rig count increased by 10 rigs this week, to a total of 257 rigs. Oil and gas rigs in Canada are now up 17 year on year. 

By Julianne Geiger for Oilprice.com

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