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What’s in Store for the US Offshore Rig Count?

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Dec. 29 2017, Updated 7:35 a.m. ET

Weekly US rig count

The US offshore rig count stood at 19 in the week ended December 22, 2017. The rig count remained constant from the previous week. However, it is still down by six rigs year-over-year. The rig count is a key demand indicator for the offshore drilling industry.

The US oil rig count also remained constant at 747 in the week ended December 22, 2017. The rig count is 30%, or 224, higher than the rig count in the same period in 2016.

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Importance of the rig count

The rig count measures the number of rigs that are engaged in active drilling. An increase in the rig count indicates a rise in demand for drilling activity, and vice versa.

International rig count: November 2017

In November 2017, the international offshore rig count was 183, down 21 rigs from 204 in the previous month. Compared to November 2016, the rig count fell by 28 rigs. The total international rig count (land and offshore) was 942, which was higher than 925 in November 2016.

Monthly rig count: November 2017

The number of US offshore rigs dropped to 20 in November 2017 from 21 in October. The rig count dropped by two compared to November 2016. The onshore rig count rose 60% in November 2017 to 891 from 558 in November 2016. A dropping offshore rig count suggests that the offshore drilling (IYE) industry is still struggling, which could indicate a subdued outlook for companies such as Seadrill (SDRL), Diamond Offshore (DO), Transocean (RIG), Rowan Companies (RDC), and Ensco (ESV).

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