March 23, 2018 / 5:55 PM / 5 months ago

UPDATE 1-U.S. drillers add oil rigs for 2nd consecutive week -Baker Hughes

 (Adds Permian rigs, Good Friday holiday schedule)
    March 23 (Reuters) - U.S. energy companies added oil rigs
this week for a second week in a row, data showed on Friday, as
drillers followed through on plans to boost spending, encouraged
by crude prices rising toward their highest in nearly three
years.
    Drillers added four oil rigs in the week to March 23,
bringing the total count to 804, the highest since March 2015,
General Electric Co's        Baker Hughes energy services firm
said in its closely followed report. RIG-OL-USA-BHI
    More than half the total oil rigs are in the Permian basin
in west Texas and eastern New Mexico where active units
increased by seven this week to 444, the most since January
2015.
    Those new rigs should help boost oil output in the Permian
to a record high near 3.2 million barrels per day in April,
according to federal projections, representing about 30 percent
of total U.S. oil production.             
    Baker Hughes said it will publish its next North American
rig count report on Thursday, March 29, at 1 p.m. EDT (1700 GMT)
due to the Good Friday holiday on March 30.
    The U.S. rig count, an early indicator of future output, is
much higher than a year ago when 652 rigs were active. Energy
companies have been steadily increasing spending since mid-2016
when crude prices began recovering from a two-year crash.
    U.S. crude futures        traded around $65 a barrel this
week, approaching the three-year high of $66.66 hit in late
January, up sharply from the $50.85 average hit in 2017 and
$43.47 in 2016.
    Looking ahead, futures were trading around $64 for the
balance of 2018           and $59 for calendar 2019          .
    In anticipation of higher prices, U.S. financial services
firm Cowen & Co said 58 of the roughly 65 exploration and
production (E&P) companies they track have already provided
guidance indicating an 11 percent increase this year in planned
capital spending.
    Cowen said those E&Ps that have reported capital plans
expected to spend a total of $80.5 billion in 2018, up from an
estimated $72.4 billion in 2017.
    Analysts at Simmons & Co, energy specialists at U.S.
investment bank Piper Jaffray, this week forecast the total oil
and natural gas rig count would average 1,015 in 2018 and 1,128
in 2019, the same as its projection last week.
    So far this year, the total number of oil and natural gas
rigs active in the United States has averaged 964, up sharply
from an average of 876 rigs in 2017 and 509 in 2016, and not far
from the total of 978 in 2015. Most rigs produce both oil and
gas.
    EIA projected this month that average annual U.S. production
will rise to a record high 10.7 million barrels per day (bpd) in
2018 and 11.3 million bpd in 2019.         The current all-time
peak was in 1970 at 9.6 million bpd, according to federal energy
data.

    
 (Reporting by Scott DiSavino
Editing by Susan Thomas and David Gregorio)
  
 
 
0 : 0
  • narrow-browser-and-phone
  • medium-browser-and-portrait-tablet
  • landscape-tablet
  • medium-wide-browser
  • wide-browser-and-larger
  • medium-browser-and-landscape-tablet
  • medium-wide-browser-and-larger
  • above-phone
  • portrait-tablet-and-above
  • above-portrait-tablet
  • landscape-tablet-and-above
  • landscape-tablet-and-medium-wide-browser
  • portrait-tablet-and-below
  • landscape-tablet-and-below