US drilling activity takes another tumble

By OGJ editors
HOUSTON, Jan. 9 -- US drilling activity continued to decline with more producers laying down rigs in an uncertain economy, according to the latest count by Baker Hughes Inc.

The total US rig count was down 34 to 1,589 rotary rigs still working, compared with 1,744 during the same period a year ago. The biggest decline was in land operations, down 39 rigs to 1,508 working. Inland waters operations gained 3 units with 11 still drilling. Offshore operations also gained, up 2 units to 65 active rigs in the Gulf of Mexico and 70 in US waters overall.

Of the rigs still working 1,239 were drilling for natural gas, 28 fewer than the previous week. There were 341 rigs drilling for oil, a decline of 5 units; 9 rigs were unclassified. Horizontal drilling decreased by 8 to 552 rigs this week. Directional drilling was up 4 units to 315.

Among the major producing states, Louisiana was the only state to gain any units, up 6 units to 183 drilling. Texas dropped the largest amount, down 34 rigs with 713 still working. Wyoming was down 6 rigs to 61 drilling. North Dakota was down 5 to 68, while Oklahoma was down 4 rigs to 155 drilling. The Colorado rig count fell by 2 to 91 rigs. Arkansas and California slipped by 1 unit each to 49 and 35 rigs, respectively. Alaska and New Mexico were unchanged with respective rigs counts of 13 and 60.

Canada's weekly rig count was up considerably by 130 units to 360 rigs active. This is down from 515 in the same week last year.

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