Number of active US rigs up 11

AP News
Posted: Dec 31, 2009 3:58 PM

The number of rigs actively exploring for oil and natural gas in the U.S. rose by 11 this week to 1,189.

Houston-based Baker Hughes Inc. said Thursday 759 rigs were exploring for natural gas and 418 for oil. Twelve were listed as miscellaneous. A year ago this week, the rig count stood at 1,623.

Of the major oil- and gas-producing states, Texas increased by seven and Louisiana by six, while California, North Dakota and Pennsylvania each were up by one.

Alaska, Arkansas, Colorado and Wyoming each declined by one. New Mexico, Oklahoma and West Virginia were unchanged.

The rig count tally peaked at 4,530 in 1981, during the height of the oil boom. The industry posted a record low of 488 in 1999.

(This version CORRECTS time element to Thursday)