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Patterson drilling rigs under contract rise slightly in December 2019

Patterson-UTI Energy Inc. on Jan. 6 reported that it had an average of 122 drilling rigs operating in December 2019, a slight increase from 119 in the previous month.

For the fourth quarter, the company said it had an average of 123 drilling rigs operating, down from the 126 it expected to operate during the quarter.

Patterson executives said on a third-quarter earnings call that they expected the average number of rigs operating under a drilling contract to bottom out in the fourth quarter of 2019 but make a modest recovery in the first quarter as operators reset their budgets.