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Julianne Geiger

Julianne Geiger

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Sliding Oil Rig Count Props Up Oil Prices

The the number of active oil and gas rigs fell slightly in the United States this week according to Baker Hughes, after two large drops in the two previous weeks, keeping the overall rig count well below year-ago levels for a third week in a row.

The total number of active oil and gas drilling rigs in the United States fell by 1 according to the report, with the number of active oil rigs gaining 2 to reach 807 and the number of gas rigs falling by 3 to reach 183.

The combined oil and gas rig count is now down year on year, with oil seeing a 27-rig decrease year on year and gas rigs down 13 since this time last year.

At 11:44am EST, WTI was trading up $0.56 (+0.91%) at $62.37—up on the day, but down on the week as record-high production in the United States combined with a substantial rise in US crude oil inventories. This rise in inventories and production in the world’s most watched market is capped by growing concern that production decreases in Iran and Venezuela as the result of US sanctions looks to tighten the oil market.

The Brent benchmark was trading up $0.57 (+0.81%) at $71.32, down just slightly week on week.

Despite the recent downward trend in the number of active oil rigs in the United States, US crude oil production reached a new all-time highs, and for week ending April 26, US oil production stood at 12.3 million barrels.

Canada’s rig count dropped by 2, with the number of active oil rigs down by 2, and the number of gas rigs holding steady at 44. Canada’s oil rigs are now down 20 year on year, with gas rigs down 5 year on year.

WTI was trading up 0.76% on the day at 1:07pm EST, with Brent up 0.78%.

By Julianne Geiger For Oilprice.com

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Leave a comment
  • Ryad Rizouk on May 03 2019 said:
    If the rig count has no bearing on production level as the figures you quoted show, then how can you establish the causal link between falling rig count and the oil price increase, i suggest not every price movement needs an explanation.

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