Environment and Energy

Rig Counts Drop in US, Canada

Written by Becca Moczygemba

Rig counts fell in both the US and Canada for the week ended May 19 vs. the week prior, according to the latest data from oilfield services company Baker Hughes.

The total US rig count stood at 720 as of May 19, down 11 from the previous week. The number of active oil rigs in the US fell by 11 to 575 in the same comparison. Gas rigs and miscellaneous rigs remained unchanged, with gas rigs at 141 and miscellaneous rigs at four. When compared to this time last year, the US count is down by eight rigs, with oil rigs down one, gas rigs down nine, and miscellaneous rigs up two, respectively.

0519 RigCount Fig 1.1.1

0519 RigCount Tab 1.1

The number of active Canadian rigs dropped by nine as of May 19 to 85 vs. the previous week. Active oil rigs in Canada rose to 39 from 37, while gas rigs decreased to 46 from 57. Canada’s rig count dropped three rigs from last year’s count of 88, with oil down one, and gas rigs down two, respectively.

0519 RigCount Fig 2.1

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 Becca Moczygemba, becca@steelmarketupdate.com

Becca Moczygemba

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