Lower 48 natural gas-directed rigs are likely to retreat because of weak prices, Patterson-UTI Inc. CEO Andy Hendricks said Thursday.


Hendricks held a conference call to share quarterly results and discuss the outlook for contract drilling services, the company’s forté. At the end of January, the company had 130 rigs on average working in the Lower 48.

“While gas markets outside of the Northeast may soften in activity, we do not believe that the release of any Tier-1, super-spec rigs from these areas would negatively impact pricing, as utilization for available rigs of this type is near 100%,” Hendricks said.

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