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Advance in rig counts pushes total to near 1-year high

The latest data on rig counts from Baker Hughes Inc. showed that a rise in the number of rigs targeting crude oil and natural gas helped to push the total U.S. rig count to the highest level in nearly 12 months.

The U.S. total rig count gained 16 to reach 653 during the week ended Dec. 23. It was the highest reading since the week ended Jan. 8. The figure was down 47 from the corresponding week a year earlier and 1,378 rigs below the Sept. 12, 2008, record high of 2,031.

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Natural gas rigs increased three to 129 but were down 33 from the same week a year ago, putting the figure 1,477 rigs below the record high of 1,606 reached in the week ended Sept. 12, 2008. The number of rigs targeting crude oil gained 13 to 523 but was down 15 from the same week a year earlier, putting it 1,086 rigs below the peak of 1,609 set in the week ended Oct. 10, 2014.

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The North American rig count climbed six to reach 877 and was up 51 from the prior year. Canadian rigs dropped 10 from a week earlier to reach 224, which was 98 rigs above the same week a year earlier.

U.S. land rigs climbed 13 in the week ended Dec. 23 to 627 but were down 48 from the same week a year ago. Inland water rigs remained unchanged versus the prior week and year-ago week at one. Offshore rigs increased three on the week to reach 25 and were up one from a year earlier.

By trajectory, vertical rigs dropped two from the prior week and dropped 17 from a year ago to reach 69. Directional rigs gained four to 58 but were down two from a year ago. Horizontal rigs gained 14 on the week but were down 28 from the prior-year period to reach 526.

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