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Utica Shale Natural Gas Production: Slowest Growth in August

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Sep. 21 2015, Published 4:45 p.m. ET

Utica Shale natural gas production

According to the EIA (U.S. Energy Information Administration), the Utica Shale in eastern Ohio has become one of the fastest-growing natural gas producing regions in the US. In its Drilling Productivity Report released on September 14, 2015, the EIA estimates that the Utica Shale natural gas production reached 2.78 Bcf (billion cubic feet) per day in August. That’s 1.30% more than the production in July and 79% more than the production last year.

August had the slowest natural gas production growth in the Utica Shale in 2015. In the past eight years, the natural gas production at the Utica Shale rose more than 16 fold.

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Rigs and monthly additions from one average rig

According to Baker Hughes (BHI), there are currently six rigs operating at the Utica Shale. In comparison, 29 rigs were in operation in the shale last year.

From August 2007 to August 2015, the additional natural gas production per rig at the Utica Shale rose from ~0.17 MMcf (million cubic feet) per day to 7.19 MMcf per day, or by 42x In the 12 months leading up to August 2015, natural gas production addition per rig rose 40%.

Utica Shale producers

Higher natural gas production and productivity gains have benefited major energy producers at the Utica Shale including EQT (EQT), CONSOL Energy (CNX), and Chesapeake Energy (CHK).

CONSOL Energy forms 0.37% of the Energy Select Sector SPDR ETF (XLE). It forms 0.22% of the Vanguard Energy ETF (VDE).

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