Oil Rigs Decline in U.S., Paring 10th Annual Advance

(Correct decline in oil rigs in third paragraph.)

Oil rigs in the U.S. dropped for the sixth week in a row, paring a 10th straight annual gain.

Oil rigs fell by 13 to 1,327 the week, data posted on Baker Hughes Inc. (BHI)’s website show. For the year, oil rigs rose 11 percent. The number of oil rigs has risen every year since 2002, when there were 136.

The decline capped the second consecutive quarterly drop, according to data from the Houston oilfield-services company. In the fourth quarter, oil rigs fell by 83.

The total rig count fell a fifth straight week, by 11 to 1,763. Gas rigs rose by two to 431.

The natural gas rig count has shrunk to less than a third of its peak in August 2008 because of a switch from dry gas to more profitable crude and natural gas liquids drilling.

To contact the reporter on this story: Barbara Powell in Dallas at bpowell4@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Dan Stets at dstets@bloomberg.net

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