Oil Futures Remain Lower As U.S. Rig Count Rises For 6th Straight Week

By MarketWatchMarketsMarketWatch Pulse

Crude-oil futures remained under pressure Friday after oilfield-services firm Baker Hughes reported that the number of active U.S. oil rigs rose by seven this week to 381--the sixth consecutive weekly increase. West Texas Intermediate oil for September delivery on the New York Mercantile Exchange was off 48 cents, or 1.1%, at $41.45 a barrel. The number of rigs remains down 289 from a year ago. The rebound in the number of rigs over the last six weeks, however, has added to worries about a global glut of crude. Oil futures sank to a three-month low below $40 a barrel earlier this week and entered a bear market before rebounding Wednesday and Thursday in the wake of a drop in gasoline inventories. The U.S. oil benchmark is on track for a 0.4% weekly decline.

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