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U.S. Rig Count Continues To Rise As WTI Hits $110

The number of total active drilling rigs in the United States rose by 9 this week, on top of the 7 rig increase in the week prior, according to new data from Baker Hughes published on Friday.

The total rig count increased to 714 this week—261 rigs higher than the rig count this time in 2021 and the highest count since April 2020. Drilling has picked up substantially since the Russia invasion, adding 64 rigs within that timeframe.

Oil rigs in the United States rose this week by 6 rigs to 563, while gas rigs rose by 3 to 149. Miscellaneous rigs stayed the same, at 2.

The rig count in the Permian Basin stayed the same this week, at 335 while rigs in the Eagle Ford rose by 1. Despite this week’s stagnation, Permian rigs have made substantial gains since the sharp dropoff in 2020 following the Covid-19 lockdowns and subsequent demand destruction, recovering to 186 percent from the low of 117 rigs in August 2020 to 335 rigs now.

U.S. crude oil production slipped for the first time in 13 weeks for the week ending May 06,  to 11.8 million bpd, according to the latest Energy Information Administration—a mere 200,000 bpd rise since the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

At 11:20 a.m. ET, oil prices were trending up on the day. WTI was trading at $109.80—up $3.66 per barrel (+3.45%) on the day but down roughly $0.30 on the week. The Brent benchmark traded at $110.90 per barrel, up $3.42 (+3.18%) on the day but down $2.30 on the week.

At 1:09 pm ET, WTI had risen to $110.30, while Brent was trading at $111.30.

By Julianne Geiger for Oilprice.com

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  • Mamdouh Salameh on May 13 2022 said:
    Despite rises in both the WTI price and oil rigs, US shale oil production is hardly responding and the reason isn’t capital discipline but because the sweet and most lucrative spots in the shale plays have already been exhausted leaving drillers to go after the costly and less economic ones.

    Moreover, the US crude oil production of 11.8 million barrels a day (mbd) is questionable since there is a difference ranging from 0.6-1.0 mbd between the Energy Information Administration’s weekly and monthly figures. This means that US production ranges from 10.8-11.2 mbd.

    Dr Mamdouh G Salameh
    International Oil Economist
    Visiting Professor of Energy Economics at ESCP Europe Business School, London

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