US Onshore Rig Count Down 51% since November 2014



Onshore rig count lowest since 2009

During the week ended April 17, 2015, the US land-based or onshore rig count fell by 34 compared to the previous week’s count. Last week, there were 921 land-based rigs, including four inland water rigs. The inland water rig count remained unchanged from the previous week. With last week’s count, the number of active US onshore rigs fell to its lowest level since July 31, 2009.

Oilfield service companies provide various drilling-related services and technologies. The falling rig count will reduce oilfield service companies’ revenues. The largest oilfield service companies include Baker Hughes (BHI), Halliburton (HAL), Cameron International (CAM), and Schlumberger (SLB). Combined, these companies form 41.5% of the VanEck Vectors Oil Services ETF (OIH). Halliburton also makes up 1.51% of the iShares Global Energy ETF (IXC).

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Last week was the 21st straight week that the onshore rig count declined. Texas lost 15 rigs, while North Dakota lost five rigs. The onshore rig count reached 1,876 in the week ended November 21, 2014, the highest since July 2012. A total of 955 onshore rigs have gone offline since November 21, 2014, representing a decline of ~51%.

In the last year, the land-based US rig count fell by 858. In contrast, the number of offshore rigs decreased by 19. The number of land-based rigs declined most in Texas, where 471 rigs shut down. North Dakota lost 95 rigs last year.

The onshore US rig count started to look weak after hitting its highest levels since August 2012. Although the onshore rig count had been on an uptick since the beginning of 2014, falling crude oil prices ended that trend.

Most prolific states

Despite the recent decrease, Texas still has the most land-based rigs in the United States with 411, or 45%, of the total US land-based rigs. Oklahoma follows Texas with 118 land-based rigs. North Dakota has 83 land-based rigs.

Next, let’s look at the offshore rig count from last week.


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