Weekly rig count
The US offshore rig count in Week 21, which ended May 25, was 19, unchanged from the previous week and four rigs lower year-over-year. In the last three weeks, the offshore rig count has risen. The total US rig count (oil and natural gas rigs) was 1,059 in Week 21, up 13 rigs from the previous week, and significantly higher than the 908 rigs reported in the same period last year. The total US oil rig count was 859, 15 rigs up from the previous week.
Importance of the rig count
The rig count is the number of rigs that are actively drilling. An increase in the rig count indicates a rise in the demand for drilling activity, while a decrease indicates a fall in demand.
Monthly rig count
In April, the average US rig count (land and offshore) was 1,011, up by 22 rigs from 989 in the previous month and by 20 rigs YoY (year-over-year). The average US offshore rig count was 16, up by three rigs from 13 rigs in the previous month and down by four rigs YoY.
A falling rig count suggests that the offshore drilling (IYE) industry may be struggling. It suggests a bleak outlook for companies such as Transocean (RIG), Ensco (ESV), Seadrill (SDRL), Rowan Companies (RDC), and Diamond Offshore (DO).