The U.S. rig count climbed 14 units to 1,081 for the week ended Friday (Nov. 9), including a big increase in oil-directed drilling and gains in the Permian Basin, according to data from Baker Hughes, a GE Company (BHGE).
The United States added 12 oil rigs and two natural gas-directed rigs to end the week with 174 more units than the year-ago period. Most of the gains were on land, though three rigs returned to work in the Gulf of Mexico. Seven vertical units and six horizontal units were added, along with one directional rig.
Canada dropped two rigs overall for the week, with a net decline of four oil rigs offsetting an increase of two gas rigs. The combined North American rig count finished the week at 1,277, outpacing its year-ago tally by 167 rigs.
Among plays, the Permian led gainers, picking up five units to grow its tally to 492 (386 a year ago). The Marcellus Shale and Denver Julesburg-Niobrara eached added two rigs, while one rig returned to action in the Williston Basin, according to BHGE.
Meanwhile, despite the overall gains in the U.S., Cana Woodford activity moved sharply in the opposite direction, dropping nine units overall to end the week at 57 active rigs, down from 73 running a year ago. The Eagle Ford Shale saw three rigs exit for the week, while the Utica Shale dropped one rig overall.
Among states, Oklahoma counterintuitively picked up four rigs overall for the week, with BHGE data showing 13 rigs added in the state’s “Other” category, encompassing rigs not located in what the oilfield services company classifies as the Ardmore Woodford, Arkoma Woodford, Cana Woodford, Granite Wash or Mississippian Lime.
Elsewhere, four rigs were added in New Mexico, which underlies part of the Permian. Louisiana picked up three rigs, while Colorado and Pennsylvania each added two.
Alaska and North Dakota each picked up a rig, while Ohio, Texas and Utah each dropped one rig overall.
Earlier in the week, BHGE released its international rig count for October 2018, which climbed to 1,017, up from 1,004 in September 2018 and from 951 counted in October 2017. The average U.S. rig count for October 2018 was 1,062, up from 1,053 in September 2018 and up from 922 in October 2017.
Meanwhile, the average Canadian rig count was down 9 sequentially to 192 in October 2018, and down 12 from the 204 rigs counted in the year-ago period.