The U.S. natural gas rig count surged eight units higher to reach 121 for the week ended Friday (Sept. 15) in the latest Baker Hughes Co. (BKR) data, prompting an immediate dip in New York Mercantile Exchange (Nymex) futures amid ongoing concerns over ample production levels.

The October Nymex contract dropped from just above $2.670/MMBtu to around $2.650 shortly after the 1 p.m. ET release of the latest BKR figures. 

The combined domestic count increased by nine week/week to 641, with oil-directed rigs increasing by two. The overall U.S. count is still down from 763 in the year-ago period, according to the BKR numbers, which are based partly on Enverus data.

Changes in the United States included a nine-rig increase in land-directed drilling, with offshore drilling unchanged...