US oil-rig count increases to a nearly two-year high

The US oil-rig count rose by five to 688, according to oilfield-services provider Baker Hughes, marking the 14th week in a row with an increase. Gas rigs rose by five to 167 and miscellaneous rigs remained unchanged at two, leaving the total rotary rig count at 857.

The oil rig count was at its highest level since the week ending April 24, 2015.

As of about 1:07 PM eastern time, the US benchmark West Texas Intermediate crude oil was down about 1.9% to a price of $US49.32 per barrel.

Last week, the oil-rig count rose by 11, gas rigs fell by three, and miscellaneous rigs were unchanged at two.

Here’s how the oil-rig count has changed over the last several years:

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