US rig count decreases by 3 this week to 946

The number of rigs exploring for oil and natural gas in the U.S. decreased by three this week to 946.

A year ago, just 491 rigs were active.

Houston oilfield services company Baker Hughes said Friday that 763 rigs sought oil and 182 explored for natural gas this week. One was listed as miscellaneous.

Among major oil- and gas-producing states, California gained two rigs and New Mexico increased by one.

North Dakota declined by two rigs while Alaska, Louisiana, Oklahoma and Utah were down by one apiece.

Arkansas, Colorado, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas, West Virginia and Wyoming were all unchanged.

The U.S. rig count peaked at 4,530 in 1981. It bottomed out in May of 2016 at 404.