Rig Count Hits Another Yearly High
Source: Seeking Alpha, Zack's (8/24/10)
"The current U.S. rig count is 88% higher from 2009 low of 876."
Rigs exploring and producing in the U.S. totaled 1,651 for the week ended August 20, 2010. This is up by 11 from the previous week's rig count and represents the highest level achieved this year. The current nationwide rig count is 88% higher from the 2009 low of 876 (set in the week ended June 12, 2009) and significantly exceeds the prior-year level of 985. It rose to a 22-year high in 2008, peaking at 2,031 in the weeks ending August 29 and September 12.
Rigs engaged in land operations climbed by 8 to 1,616, inland waters activity increased by 2 to 14 and offshore drilling added one for 21 rigs.
Natural Gas Rig Count
The natural gas rig count decreased for just the second time in the last eight weeks to 985 (a loss of 7 from the previous week). Last week, the number of gas-directed rigs hit 992, an 18-month high. The U.S. gas drilling rig count has rebounded strongly after bottoming out to a 7-year low of 665 on July 17, 2009. Still, the rig count remains 39% lower than its peak of 1,606 in late summer 2008. In the year-ago period, there were 695 active natural gas rigs.
Oil Rig Count
The oil rig count was up by 19 to 655, the fifth consecutive weekly rise and highest level since December 14, 1990. The current tally is considerably higher than the previous year's count of 280. It has recovered nicely from a low of 179 in June 2009, nearly quadrupling in number.
Miscellaneous Rig Count
The miscellaneous rig count (primarily drilling for geothermal energy) at 11, was down one from the previous week.