Although slight, the Gulf of Mexico (GOM) was the only region in the world to show a gain in offshore rigs in April, according to GlobalSantaFe's Summary of Current Offshore Rig Economics (SCORE).

SCORE compares the profitability of current mobile offshore drilling rig dayrates to the profitability of dayrates in the 1980-1981 peak of the offshore drilling cycle. In the 1980-1981 period, when SCORE averaged 100%, new contract dayrates equaled the sum of daily cash operating costs plus $700/day per $1 million invested.

According to GlobalSantaFe, the GOM's April SCORE was up 1.5% from a year earlier to 120.3, which was 1.1% higher than the 119.0 recorded in March. In the past five years, the SCORE in the GOM has risen 323.4%.

Comparatively, the North Sea's SCORE for April fell 8.1% from March; West Africa's was off 0.6% and Southeast Asia's fell 9.8%. Compared with April 2006, the North Sea SCORE is up 5.9%; West Africa's is up 29%; and Southeast Asia's is up 34.4%.

By type, SCORE noted the jack-up drilling rigs were 122.5 in April, which was down 3% from 126.3 recorded in March. However, the rate was still 171.5% higher than the same period of 2006. The SCORE for semisubmersible rigs was 149.8 in April, down 4.2% from 156.4 in March. However, the SCORE for semisubmersible rigs in April was 256.6% higher than the same period a year ago.

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