U.S. land-based oil rigs increased 116% between July 2016 and July 2017. New Mexico’s rig count grew the most at 119%, to 59 from 27 rigs. In terms of total rigs added, Texas brought 269 online, bringing the state’s total count to about 500 rigs.
Over that period, the price of a barrel of oil advanced to $51 from about $42 with an average daily price of $48.63. Oil prices also experienced about half the volatility in the 12-month period ended July 31, 2016 than they did over the same period ended July 31, 2017, and about a fifth of the volatility they experienced in the 12 months ended July 31, 2015.
Average daily U.S. production dipped in the third quarter of 2016 as falling prices spurred producers to cut supply. However, in the months after, production steadily climbed while oil prices failed to find support above $50 a barrel. U.S. oil exporters, reveling in their new found freedoms, shipped out record numbers in the second quarter of 2017. Shale production over the period moved in step with total production, accounting for about 62% of all U.S. crude production.