U.S. oil companies increase the number of oil and gas rigs for the second consecutive week
U.S. energy companies increased the number of oil and gas rigs for the second consecutive week, as oil prices soared to their highest level since 2019.
US energy services company Baker Hughes (Baker Hughes) said in a closely watched report on Friday that as of the week of March 5, the leading indicator of future production-the number of active oil and gas rigs in the United States increased by one to 403 seats are still the highest since May last year.
The total number of oil and gas rigs has risen for the seventh consecutive month, marking the first time since May 2018. It fell to 244 in August last year, the lowest since 1940.
Separately, the number of oil rigs increased by one this week to 310, the highest since May, and the number of natural gas rigs remained flat at 92.
Data and analysis company Enverus said that the most active operators as of Wednesday were EOG Resources (22), Pioneer Natural Resources (21), Devon Energy (17), Occidental Petroleum (15) and ConocoPhillips Oil company (14 seats).
Enverus also said that the number of drilling rigs in the Permian Basin in West Texas and eastern New Mexico increased the most, nine more than the previous week. As of March 3, Pioneer Natural Resources has increased the number of drilling rigs in the Permian region to 21, the highest since April 2020 and higher than the February average of 18.
US crude oil futures soared above US$66 per barrel this week and closed at the highest price since 2019, as the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and its allies, namely OPEC, maintained the scale of the April production cut.
As prices rise, more and more energy companies plan to slightly increase expenditures in 2021. In the past, they have cut capital expenditures for two consecutive years.
However, expenditure growth is still small, and these oil companies are still focusing on improving cash flow, reducing debt, and increasing shareholder returns, rather than increasing production.
US financial services company Cowen & Co said that the 45 independent exploration and production (E&P) companies it tracks plan to increase spending in 2021 by approximately 2% over the previous year. These companies have reduced their capital expenditures by 49% and 12% in 2020 and 2019, respectively.