Oil and Gas Rigs in U.S. Rose to 1,873, Baker Hughes Says

Rigs targeting oil and natural gas in the U.S. rose by 15 this week to 1,873, according to Baker Hughes Inc.

Oil rigs rose by 13 to 1,558, data posted on the company’s website show. The gas count increased by 3 to 314, the Houston-based field services company said.

Pioneer Natural Resources Ltd. and Enterprise Products Partners LP said the U.S. Commerce Department gave them approval to export ultra-light crude processed at gathering facilities in the fields of south Texas. The decision could lead to more drilling in wet gas plays, Vienna-based JBC Energy said yesterday in a research note.

“Since the source for these types of liquids would be gas wells with high liquid components, Tuesday’s decision might result in increased investment in gas production,” JBC Energy said.

U.S. oil production fell by 31,000 barrels a day, or 0.4 percent, in the week ended June 20 to 8.45 million, the Energy Information Administration said. Oil supplies grew 1.74 million barrels, or 0.5 percent, to 388.1 million.

West Texas Intermediate crude for August delivery fell to $105.70 a barrel at 1:10 p.m. on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Prices have climbed 7.4 percent this year.

U.S. gas stockpiles rose 110 billion cubic feet last week to 1.829 trillion, the EIA data said. Supplies were 31 percent below the five-year average.

Natural gas for August delivery fell to $4.396 per million British thermal units on the Nymex and has risen 3.9 percent this year.

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