US rig count drops to 936

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HOUSTON — The number of rigs exploring for oil and natural gas in the U.S. fell by eight this week to 936.

That’s up from the 506 rigs that were active a year ago.

Houston oilfield services company Baker Hughes said Friday that 749 rigs sought oil and 186 explored for natural gas this week. One was listed as miscellaneous.

Among major oil- and gas-producing states, West Virginia added one rig.

Louisiana and Texas each lost three rigs. Colorado, New Mexico and North Dakota each shed one.

Alaska, California, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Utah and Wyoming were unchanged.

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

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