Oil rig count drops for 11th straight week

The combined count of US oil and gas rigs is one shy of a record low.

Data from driller Baker Hughes Friday showed that the oil rig count fell by 8 to 392 this week. It’s the lowest count since the week of December 4, 2009.

The tally of gas rigs fell 5 to 97, taking the total rig count down 13 to 489, one rig above the lowest level in about 70 years. 

The combined count of oil and gas rigs has plummeted in the last few weeks. Last week, the oil rig count fell by 13, while the gas count rose by one.

Earlier this week, we highlighted a note from Morgan Stanley’s Ole Slorer and team who said that at this decline rate, the oil rig count will be zero by August

It’s very unlikely that this would happen, and Slorer forecasts that the bottom in the rig count will be in around the summer.

Crude oil prices were rallying on Friday, as oil headed for a third-straight week of gains. West Texas Intermediate crude futures in New York rose 3% to as high as $35.95 per barrel, a price it hasn’t reached since the first few days of January. 

Here’s the latest oil-rig count chart:

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