US drillers added 13 rigs to the number of oil and gas rigs this week, according to Baker Hughes, with oil rigs increasing by 15 and gas rigs dipping by 2. The oil and gas rig count now stands at 1,059—up 151 from this time last year. The Permian basin saw the biggest increase in the number of rigs, at 11.
Meanwhile, neighboring Canada lost 2 oil and gas rigs for the week.
Both the Brent and WTI benchmark took a steep nosedive on Friday day at 9:03am EST with both benchmarks sustaining more than a 2% loss on the day, as Saudi Arabia—OPEC’s largest member by production—and Russia were reportedly discussing lifting production by some 1 million barrels per day, with a decision expected on June 22 at the OPEC meeting in Vienna. This, despite OPEC’s compliance which has been over 100% for every month this week.
Saudi Arabia and Russia are working to offset market fears that there will be imminent supply issues courtesy of Venezuela and Libya, and the possibility of disruption in oil supply from Iran due to the US sanctions that will go into effect later this year. Related: Oil Slides As Saudis, Russia Consider 1 Million Bpd Output Boost
US oil production is also pressing down on oil prices, and for the week ending May 18, reaching 10.725 million bpd—the thirteenth build in as many weeks, although this week saw a smaller growth than in recent weeks. US production has steadily increased since OPEC engaged in a supply cut deal that sought to remove 1.8 million bpd from the market. At the time the deal was announced, the US was producing 8.6 million bpd. Today, the US is producing more than 2.0 million bpd over that figure, while OPEC/NOPEC continues to curb supply on its end.
By Julianne Geiger for Oilprice.com
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