Total number of operating rigs in the U.S. the week as of May 10th was 988, 805 oil and 183 gas. In percentage terms, on a month on month, (m/m) basis, oil rigs were down 0.2%, (-2 rigs) as gas rigs posted no change. On a year on year, (y/y) comparison, rigs were down 4.6% for oil and +8.0% for gas. The combined figure was down 5.5% or 57 rigs.

rigcount-fig1Figure 1 shows the Baker Hughes U.S. Rotary Rig Counts for oil and gas equipment in the U.S. from 2012 to present. Oil rigs rose steadily from 316 in late May 2016 topping-out at 800 this week. Gas rigs bottomed-out at 86 in August 2016 then rose steadily.

For the week ending May 10th, Texas was operating 482 rigs, plus three off-shore rig, (49% of the total), followed by Oklahoma with 105, (10.6%), New Mexico with 102, (10.3%). Louisiana had 44 on-land and 17 off-shore, (6.2%). North Dakota’s count was 56, (5.7%). These five states together account for 82% of the nation’s rig count.

Concerns over the U.S.-China trade dispute initially shifted the weekly decline in U.S. crude inventories reported Wednesday. However, traders have continued to watch growing tensions between the U.S. and Iran, which could disrupt Middle East output and drive oil prices higher. “The escalation in the trade war has put a return in global growth worries, which would translate to softer crude demand,” said Edward Moya, senior market analyst at Oanda.

At Gerdau we monitor rig counts along with the price of oil and natural gas since it has a major impact on long product sales to include Special Bar Quality sucker rods for downhole pumping strings to merchant and structural products for rigs and oilfield equipment.