Following its first decline in six months, the U.S. active oil and gas rig count returned to growth last week, while the price of oil took a sudden fall.
Friday's combined U.S. oil and gas rig count provided by oilfield services provider Baker Hughes showed that the current mark is now at 952 — up 12 from a week earlier, up 116.4 percent year-over-year and up 135.6 percent since bottoming out at 404 on May 20 and May 27, 2016. The combined count had increased for 23 straight weeks until dipping by one two weeks ago. Oil rigs comprised 80.1 percent of Friday's total.
The U.S. added seven oil rigs last week, moving its current mark to 763. That count has increased in 34 out of the past 36 weeks. Its count is up 117.4 percent year-over-year and up 141.5 percent since bottoming out at 316 on May 27, 2016. The current oil rig total is still less than half the 1,600 mark it checked in at on Oct. 10, 2014, but has grown steadily for more than 13 straight months.
The U.S. added five gas rigs last week, moving its current mark to 189. The active gas rig count is up 114.8 percent year-over-year and up 133.3 percent since bottoming out at 81 on Aug. 5 and Aug. 26, 2016.
The U.S. miscellaneous rig count remained at zero.
Alaska and Oklahoma led last week's overall rig count gain, each adding four. Louisiana and Texas each added a pair, while New Mexico and Utah lost one apiece.
Canada's seven-week streak of rig increases snapped last week, as the country lost 14 and moved its current total to 175. Canada lost seven oil and gas rigs each. Its combined count is up 116.0 percent year-over-year, with its 105 oil rigs up by 68 and its 70 gas rigs up by 27.
Friday's North American combined rig count of 1,127 is down by two from a week earlier. It is up by 606 year-over-year, or 116.3 percent.
Oil Price Update
The price of WTI Crude oil had increased for nine consecutive business days through last Wednesday up above $47, but took a dive on Thursday and Friday and into Monday, falling back below $44.
Oil opened July 3 at $46.28 and climbed to as high as $47.32 before falling more than $2 that same day and another $1 on Friday to close last week at $44.23. Oil opened Monday at $44.35 and was at $44.13 as of 9:06 a.m. CT.