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US rig count slips to 851 on receding gas activity

After nudging higher the week prior, the combined oil and natural gas rig count in the U.S. slipped by five to 851 for the week ended Oct. 18, according to the latest Rotary Rig Count released by Baker Hughes Co., formerly known as Baker Hughes a GE Company.

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The count was also down by 216 rigs from the same week in 2018.

Oil-directed rigs were up by one to 713 rigs during the review week but are down 160 rigs from a year ago. Gas-directed rigs tumbled by six to 137 rigs during the week and are 57 rigs lower than values seen in the same week in 2018.

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The fall in gas-directed rigs can be traced to declines in two major shale plays. Rigs in the Cana Woodford basin were pegged at 30 while the Marcellus basin noted 44 rigs, both down by three rigs for the week and also lower than levels reported during the same week a year ago.

Canadian rigs came in at 143, down by three for the week and 48 rigs lower than levels seen during the corresponding week in 2018.