Environment and Energy

Rig Count Falls in US, Canada Unchanged

Rig counts fell in the US and remained flat in Canada vs. the previous week, according to the latest data from oilfield services company Baker Hughes.

The total US rig count was 748 for the week ended May 5, off seven rigs from the previous week. The number of active oil rigs in the US fell by three to 588 in the same comparison. Gas rigs were down by four, finishing the week at 157, while miscellaneous rigs were unchanged at three. When compared to this time last year, the US count is up by 43 rigs, with oil rigs up 31, gas rigs up 11, and miscellaneous rigs up one, respectively.

0428 RigCount Fig1

0428 RigCount Tab1

After declining for eight straight weeks, the number of active Canadian rigs was 93, unchanged from the previous week. Active oil rigs in Canada dropped two to 34, while gas rigs increased by two to 59. The Canadian count is up by two rigs vs. the same week last year, with oil down eight and gas rigs up 10, respectively.

0428 RigCount Fig2

The international rig count increased by 17 to 947 rigs in April vs. March, and is up by 141 rigs compared with the same month last year.

The number of oil and gas rigs in operation is important to the steel industry because it is a leading indicator of demand for oil country tubular goods (OCTG), a key end-market for steel sheet.

A rotary rig is one that rotates the drill pipe from the surface to either drill a new well or to sidetrack an existing one. Wells are drilled to explore for, develop, and produce oil or natural gas. The Baker Hughes Rotary Rig count includes only those rigs that are significant consumers of oilfield services and supplies.

Steel Market Update regularly publishes an in-depth “Energy Update” report covering oil and natural gas prices, detailed rig count data, and oil stock levels. That is available here for Premium members.

For a history of both the US and Canadian rig count, visit the Rig Count page on the Steel Market Update website here.

By Ethan Bernard, ethan@steelmarketupdate.com

Latest in Environment and Energy