The Baker Hughes North American rig count is up 13 rigs in the November 17 week to 1,123. The U.S. rig count is up 8 rigs at 915 and is up 327 rigs from last year at this time. The Canadian count is up 5 rigs from last week to 208 and compared to last year is up 24 rigs.
For the U.S. count, rigs classified as drilling for oil are unchanged at 738 and gas rigs are up 8 at 177. For the Canadian count, oil rigs are up are up 1 at 109 and gas rigs are up 4 at 99.
The second consecutive weekly increase follows 5 weeks of declines and indicates that North American exploration and development companies are finally responding to a month-long climb in oil prices that last week attained the highest levels in over 2 years, with WTI reaching nearly $58 per barrel before retreating this week on news of inventory increases. With breakeven rates for many U.S. exploration and development companies below $45 per barrel, drilling activity is likely to heat up further if current price levels are maintained.