The U.S. rig count posted a second straight double-digit decline during the week ended Friday (May 19), this time with losses hitting the oil patch, the latest figures from Baker Hughes Co. (BKR) show.

U.S. operators shelved 11 rigs — all oil-directed — for the period, dropping the domestic tally to 720, lagging the year-earlier count of 728. 

In the week-earlier period, BKR reported a 16-rig decline in natural gas drilling that caught the attention of futures traders as it signaled an upstream response to weak prices in 2023.

As for the latest rig declines, 10 rigs exited on land, with the Gulf of Mexico count down one to 21, versus 17 a year ago. Ten horizontal rigs packed up shop, joined by one directional unit, according to the BKR numbers, which are partly based on...