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U.S. oil companies sidelined 24 oil-drilling rigs this week, according to Baker Hughes’ rig count released Friday, dropping the number of active oil rigs to 679.
The number of U.S. oil rigs fell once again this week, Baker Hughes said Friday, as producers kept cutting drilling in the face of low crude prices.
Oil has climbed more than 40 percent since reaching a six-year low in January on estimates that the cutback in U.S. rigs and a boost for fuel demand from lower prices will help drain the global supply surplus.
Just five months after Saudi Arabia put the market into a tailspin by refusing to cut supply despite a global glut, the shale oil industry will record its first monthly dip since 2013.
The number of rigs drilling for oil in the U.S. fell by 42 this week, a reversal from previous figures that suggested the industry’s pull back was slowing down.
Baker Hughes is closing its Bryan office and laying off 54 employees, marking the latest reduction for the Houston-based oil field services company.
Six of the oil rigs were idled in Texas. The slight dip – compared to the past four months of steep drops in active U.S. rigs – brought the nation’s oil-rig count to 802.
Total rigs drilling for both oil and natural gas fell by 21 to 1,048, with gas rigs down 9 to 233, and miscellaneous rigs unchanged at 2.
Rigs chasing crude are now at their lowest level since 2011.
The government’s top offshore energy overseers on Tuesday defended the Obama administration’s approach to oil and gas drilling along the nation’s coastlines, insisting that market forces — not federal regulations — were discouraging the activity.