The U.S. natural gas rig count eased one unit lower to 159 for the week ended Friday (Aug. 19), while oil activity held steady, according to updated numbers from oilfield services provider Baker Hughes Co. (BKR).

rig count

Total domestic oil-directed rigs went unchanged week/week at 601. The combined U.S. count dropped one unit to 762, versus 503 rigs running in the year-earlier period, according to the BKR numbers, which are based partly on data from Enverus.

Land drilling declined by one unit in the United States for the week, while the Gulf of Mexico count finished unchanged at 16. Horizontal units increased by one, while total vertical rigs were down two.

The Canadian rig count was similarly steady for the week, as no net change in either oil- or natural gas-directed activity saw...