The total number of operating rigs in the US the week ending March 24th was 809, 652 oil and 155 gas. For oil, this was 75.3% higher year on year (y/y), and 8.3% greater than a month ago. For gas the y/y increase was 68.5%, while the month on month (m/m), increase was 2.6%. In Canada on a y/y comparison, oil rigs surged by 536% but were down 66% m/m. Canadian gas rigs rose 159% y/y but fell back 8.8% m/m.

us-oil-rig-fig1Figure 1 shows the Baker Hughes US Rotary Rig Counts for oil and gas equipment in the US through March 24th. US oil rig count trending sharply higher since the recent low of 316 units on May 27th. The gas rig count bottomed out at 81 on August 26th and has almost doubled since then.

On a regional basis in the US, the big four states for operating rigs are Texas, Oklahoma and New Mexico and North Dakota. Texas at 403 on March 24th was up from a low point of 173 on June 20th, matching its April 17th 2015 output. Oklahoma at 118 was up from its low point of 54 on June 24th 2016 also matched its April 17th 2015 output. New Mexico moved into the number three position overtaking North Dakota with 48 rigs as of March 24th, up from just 14 one year ago. North Dakota at 43 was up from its low point of 22 on June 3rd but down from 53 at the beginning of the year.

us-rig-count-fig2Figure 2 presents data on the largest rig counts by basin. The Permian basin dwarfs (currently 315 rigs), the next largest basis, the Eagle Ford (currently 72 rigs). Cana Woodford holds third place with 50 operating rigs. The Marcellus currently ranks fourth at 44 with Williston right behind with 43 a rig count.

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.