US oil and natural gas rig count increases by 1 this week at 885; 1,896 a year ago

IndustriesAssociated Press

Oilfield services company Baker Hughes Inc. says the number of rigs exploring for oil and natural gas in the U.S. this week increased by one to 885.

Houston-based Baker Hughes said Friday 674 rigs were seeking oil and 211 explored for natural gas. A year ago, 1,896 rigs were active.

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Among major oil- and gas-producing states, North Dakota and Oklahoma each gained three rigs and Alaska, California, Kansas and Wyoming each gained one.

Texas lost six rigs, Pennsylvania declined by two and Colorado, Louisiana and West Virginia each lost one.

Arkansas, New Mexico, Ohio and Utah were unchanged.

The U.S. rig count peaked at 4,530 in 1981 and bottomed at 488 in 1999.