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Shallow Vertical Wells Get Lift in October; Overall U.S. Rig Count Remains Flat Versus September

Eyes on Colorado's Proposition 112 in November 6 Midterm Elections
HOUSTON (November 5, 2018) S&P Global Platts Analytics, today announced the total U.S. rig count for Oct 2018 was 1,174, down 1 (0%) from September 2018, and up 126 (+12%) from October 2017. This rig count includes U.S. onshore, U.S. inland waters, and U.S. offshore Gulf of Mexico drilling rigs.
October U.S. land rig count: 1,144, down 2 (0%) from the previous month and up 124 (+12%) from October 2017
October U.S. inland waters and Gulf of Mexico rig count: , up 1 (+3%) from the previous month and up 2 (+7%) from October 2017
"While month-over-month rig count performance is basically flat, it's worth taking a look under the hood, where we see an increase in rigs for drilling conventional, shallow natural gas wells, evidence that smaller-scale natural gas producers were taking advantage of the visibly stronger natural gas prices,” said S&P Global Platts Analytics Senior Industry Analyst Trey Cowan.
Natural gas prices, according to the spot, physical market price of Henry Hub, as assessed by S&P Global Platts, showed a rise of 8% during October.
"Colorado could hold the most volatility in the months ahead,” said Cowan. "If Proposition 112* is approved at the U.S. November 6 Midterm Elections, we could see a rush to get wells drilled before permits expire and then a precipitous fall in drilling for the state."
S&P Global Platts U.S. Rig Counts
Oct-18 Sep-18 Month over Month Change % Change Oct-17 Variance Year over Year (YOY) YOY % Variance
Colorado 35 37 -2 -5% 40 -5 -13%
Louisiana 53 49 4 8% 51 2 4%
New Mexico 89 98 -9 -9% 67 22 33%
North Dakota 60 60 0 0% 52 8 15%
Oklahoma 157 155 2 1% 134 23 17%
Texas 561 563 -2 0% 489 72 15%
Rest of U.S. Land 189 184 5 3% 187 2 1%
U.S. Land Subtotal 1,144 1,146 -2 0% 1,020 124 12%
U.S. Inland Waters 3 2 1 50% 6 -3 -50%
U.S. Gulf of Mexico 27 27 0 0% 22 5 23%
U.S. Inland and Gulf of Mexico 30 29 1 3% 28 2 7%
Total U.S. Rig Count 1,174 1,175 -1 0% 1,048 126 12%
*Colorado's Proposition 112 would require that any new oil and gas development be located at least 2500 feet from any structure intended for human occupancy

S&P Global Platts Media Contact update

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