As traders continue in their attempts to push natural gas futures prices north of $8/Mcf, Baker Hughes reported Friday that the number of oil and natural gas rotary rigs in the United States actively drilling on land and in U.S. waters remained flat from the previous week at 1,747 while Canadian rigs climbed by eight to 89.

June crude continued its recent weakness Friday, dropping $1.26 to finish at $61.93/bbl. June natural gas put in a high of $8.10 on Friday before closing at $7.938, down almost a penny from Thursday (see related story).

For the week ended April 27, 1,674 rigs were active on U.S. land and 73 rigs were operating in offshore U.S waters. For the week ended May 4, 1,673 rigs were working on land and 74 rigs were operating offshore. Rigs operating on land in Canada jumped by eight from week to week to 87 while offshore Canada remained stagnant at two rigs.

Total U.S. rigs drilling for gas climbed by two for the week to 1,462 while oil rigs dropped by one to 282 rigs. There were three rigs categorized under miscellaneous for the week ended May 4, down one rig from the previous week.

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