US oil and natural gas rig count drops by 6 to 888

Oilfield services company Baker Hughes Inc. says the number of rigs exploring for oil and natural gas in the U.S. declined by six this week to 888.

Houston-based Baker Hughes said Friday that 660 rigs were seeking oil and 223 explored for natural gas. Five were listed as miscellaneous. A year ago, 1,861 rigs were active.

Among major oil- and gas-producing states, Texas lost six rigs, Wyoming declined by two and Alaska, Arkansas, North Dakota and Pennsylvania each lost one.

Kansas gained four rigs, Louisiana increased by three and Oklahoma, Utah and West Virginia each gained one. California, Colorado, New Mexico and Ohio were unchanged.

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

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