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U.S. oil drillers cut rigs for second week in three

Staff Writer | September 7, 2018
U.S. energy companies cut oil rigs for the second week in three as the rig count has stagnated over the past three months along with crude prices.
Oil rig count
America   More than half the total oil rigs are in the Permian basin
Drillers cut two oil rigs in the week to Sept. 7, bringing the total count down to 860, General Electric’s Baker Hughes said.

More than half the total oil rigs are in the Permian basin in west Texas and eastern New Mexico, the nation’s biggest shale oil field. Active units there declined by two this week to 484, the least since the start of August.

Two drilling companies, Halliburton Co and Schlumberger NV, both warned this week that pipeline bottlenecks in the Permian would slow oil production growth and investments in the region.

The U.S. rig count, an early indicator of future output, rose by one in August after gaining three rigs in July and losing one in June. But is higher than a year ago when 756 rigs were active as energy companies have been ramping up production in anticipation of higher prices in 2018 than previous years.