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US total rig count declines for 1st time in 6 weeks

The combined oil and natural gas rig count in the United States decreased one during the week ended Dec. 15 to a total of 930, its first weekly decline since the week ended Nov. 3, according to Baker Hughes Inc's latest North America Rotary Rig Count.

The total count, which hit a low of 404 in May 2016, now sits 293 rigs above the corresponding week a year earlier.

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Oil-directed rigs were down four on the week to a total of 747, which was up 237 from the same week in 2016. Natural gas-directed rigs increased three on the week at 183 and were up 57 rigs on the year.

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The North American rig count jumped 18 on the week and is up 297 on the year to a total of 1,168, supported by Canadian rigs that increased 19 on the week and were up four on the year to a total of 238.

During the week ended Dec. 15, U.S. land rigs were unchanged at a total of 909, which was up 295 from the corresponding year-ago period. Inland water rigs also held flat on the week but were up one on the year at a total of two. Offshore rigs were down one on the week and off three on the year to a total of 19.

By trajectory, vertical rigs eased four on the week and were down 11 on the year to 60. Directional rigs slipped two on the week at 69, which was up 15 on the year. Horizontal rigs increased five to 801, advancing 289 from the same week in 2016.

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