Oil & Gas

20 Jan 2024

US Drillers Add Oil and Gas Rigs for First Time in Three Weeks - Baker Hugh

20 Jan 2024  by reuters   

Horizontal drilling rigs operate in the Permian Basin oil production area near Wink, Texas U.S. August 22, 2018. REUTERS/Nick Oxford/File Photo Acquire Licensing Rights

U.S. energy firms this week added oil and natural gas rigs for the first time in three weeks, energy services firm Baker Hughes (BKR.O), opens new tab said in its closely followed report on Friday.

The oil and gas rig count, an early indicator of future output, rose by one to 620 in the week to Jan. 19. , ,

Baker Hughes said U.S. oil rigs fell by two to 497 this week, their lowest since mid November, while gas rigs rose by three to 120.

The U.S. oil and gas rig count dropped about 20% in 2023 after rising by 33% in 2022 and 67% in 2021, due mostly to a drop in oil and gas prices, higher drilling costs and as companies cut spending in favor of boosting returns to shareholders.

U.S. oil futures were up about 3% so far in 2024 after dropping by 11% in 2023. U.S. gas futures , meanwhile, were down by about 1% so far in 2024 after plunging by 44% in 2023.

Despite lower prices, spending and rig counts, U.S. oil and gas output was still on track to hit record highs in 2024 and 2025 due to efficiency gains and as firms complete work on already drilled wells.

The total number of drilled but uncompleted (DUC) wells remaining dropped to a record low of 4,374 in December, according to federal energy data going back to December 2013.

The government this week increased its forecasts for new well oil production per rig at the shale basins, but also expected U.S. oil output from top shale-producing regions to decline in February for the fifth consecutive month.


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