oil refining at a record pace; largest jump in US crude supplies in 17 months; record global oil output; record backlog of DUC wells, et al

oil prices ended lower for the 7th week in a row, although as we’ve explained previously, one week in that stretch was due to the switch from quoting the August oil contract to quoting the lower priced September oil contract….after falling 86 cents, or 1.2% to $67.63 a barrel in volatile trading last week, prices for US light sweet crude for September fell 43 cents to $67.20 a barrel on Monday after OPEC lowered their estimate for next year’s oil demand growth while US oil supplies increased at the Cushing OK delivery hub…while NYMEX oil prices rallied to as high as $68.37 a barrel on Tuesday morning on news that the Saudis told OPEC that it had cut crude output by 200,000 barrels per day, that rally fizzled on a strengthening U.S. dollar and concerns about the financial crisis in Turkey and oil ended the day 16 cents lower at $67.04 a barrel…oil prices then plunged on Wednesday after the weekly EIA data showed a big, unexpected jump in U.S. crude supplies, with WTI for September delivery falling $2.03, or 3%, to settle at $65.01 a barrel, its lowest close since June 6th…oil prices recovered a bit on Thursday, rising 45 cents to $65.46 a barrel, on prospects of renewed US-China trade talks, alleviating some of the trade war.fears that had pushed prices lower…that positive sentiment carried into Friday, as oil prices rose another 45 cents to $65.91 a barrel, but still ended with a $1.72 or a 2.6% loss on the week on concerns that oversupply would weigh on U.S. markets while trade disputes and slowing global economic growth would dampen global demand for oil.

natural gas prices for September, meanwhile, were little changed on the week, ending just two-tenths of a cent higher at 2.946 per mmBTU after a 3.8 cent increase on Friday reversed the losses from earlier in the week…while the increasing deficit of natural gas supplies heading into winter have provided an impetus for higher prices on the winter contracts, with January natural gas contracts closing at $3.168  per mmBTU and February gas closing at $3.132 per mmBTU, China’s threat of a retaliatory 25% tariff on LNG has thrown the future of natural gas demand into questionthis week’s EIA natural gas storage report for week ending August 10th indicated that natural gas in storage in the US rose by 33 billion cubic feet to 2,387 billion cubic feet during the cited week, which left our gas supplies 687 billion cubic feet, or 22.3% below the 3,074 billion cubic feet that were in storage on August 11th of last year, and 595 billion cubic feet, or 20.0% below the five-year average of 2,982 billion cubic feet of natural gas that are typically in storage heading into the second weekend of August….an S&P Global Platts’ survey of analysts had forecast that 30 billion cubic feet of natural gas would be injected into storage during the week ended August 11th, so the actual 33 billion cubic feet increase was higher than expectations and thus contributed to a 4.6 cent natural gas price drop after the report, but that 33 billion cubic foot increase was still well below the 56 billion cubic foot average of surplus natural gas that has typically been added to storage during the first full week of August in recent years, thus making for the 6th consecutive below average build…

checking the historical natural gas storage archive files, we find that this week’s natural gas supplies of 2,387 billion cubic feet are again the lowest for this time of year since August 8th, 2003, when natural gas supplies had fallen to 2,222 billion cubic feet…the only other early August records that even came close to this year’s nadir were on August 8th of 2014, when natural gas supplies were at 2,467 billion cubic feet and on August 8th of 2008, when natural gas supplies were at 2,567 billion cubic feet…Platts Analytics is now estimating that our supplies will start the natural gas heating season at 3.37 trillion cubic feet, roughly a 500 billion cubic feet deficit from normal….to hit even that low target, we’d have to add an average of more that 75 billion cubic feet over the next 13 weeks…since we have averaged a 39 billion cubic foot weekly injection over the past 6 weeks, we’ll have to step up the pace quite a bit this fall to meet that Platts estimate…

The Latest US Oil Data from the EIA

this week’s US oil data from the US Energy Information Administration, covering the week ending August 10th, indicated that because of a big jump in our oil imports and a modest drop in our oil exports, we had a surplus of oil to add to our domestic commercial crude supplies for the fifteenth time in the past twenty-nine weeks…. our imports of crude oil rose by an average of 1,083,000 barrels per day to an average of 9,014,000 barrels per day, after rising by an average of 182,000 barrels per day the prior week, while our exports of crude oil fell by an average of 258,000 barrels per day to an average of 1,592,000 barrels per day during the week, which meant that our effective trade in oil worked out to a net import average of 7,422,000 barrels of per day during the week ending August 10th, 1,341,000 more barrels per day than the net of our imports minus exports during the prior week…over the same period, field production of crude oil from US wells was reported to be 100,000 barrels per day higher at 10,900,000 barrels per day, which means that our daily supply of oil from the net of our trade in oil and from wells totaled an average of 18,322,000 barrels per day during the reporting week… 

at the same time, US oil refineries were using a record 17,981,000 barrels of crude per day during the week ending August 10th, 383,000 barrels per day more than they used during the prior week, while over the same week 972,000 barrels of oil per day were reportedly being added to the oil that’s in storage in the US….hence, this week’s crude oil figures from the EIA appear to indicate that our total working supply of oil from net imports and from oilfield production was 631,000 barrels per day short of what was added to storage plus what refineries reported they used during the week….to account for that disparity between the supply and the disposition of oil, the EIA needed to insert a (+631,000) barrel per day figure onto line 13 of the weekly U.S. Petroleum Balance Sheet to make the data for the supply of oil and the consumption of it balance out, essentially a fudge factor that is labeled in their footnotes as “unaccounted for crude oil”…with a difference between oil supply and its disposition as large as that, we have to consider the likelihood that one or more of this week’s EIA oil metrics contains a statistically significant error…(for more on how this weekly oil data is gathered, and the possible reasons for that “unaccounted for” oil, see this EIA explainer)…. 

further details from the weekly Petroleum Status Report (pdf) show that the 4 week average of our oil imports rose to an average of 8,116,000 barrels per day, which was just 0.9% more than the 8,046,000 barrel per day average that we were importing over the same four-week period last year….the 972,000 barrel per day increase in our total crude inventories was all added to our commercially available stocks of crude oil, as the amount of oil in our Strategic Petroleum Reserve remained unchanged….this week’s crude oil production was reported being up by 100,000 barrels per day to 10,900,000 barrels per day even as the output from wells in the lower 48 states was reportedly unchanged at 10,500,000 barrels per day because oil output from Alaska rose by 60,000 barrels per day, and since the national total is now being rounded to the nearest 100,000 barrels per day to more reflect the EIA’s inability to accurately model oil output from all the wells in the lower 48 states, that 60,000 barrels per day increase was enough to bump the rounded national total up by 100,000 barrels per day…..US crude oil production for the week ending August 11th 2017 was reportedly at 9,502,000 barrels per day, so this week’s rounded oil production figure was roughly 14.7% above that of a year ago, and 29.3% more than the interim low of 8,428,000 barrels per day that US oil production fell to during the last week of June of 2016…

meanwhile, US oil refineries were operating at 98.1% of their capacity in using 17,981,000 barrels of crude per day during the week ending August 10th, up from 96.6% of capacity the prior week, and the highest refinery utilization rate since our refineries operated at 98.9% of capacity during the week ending September 11, 1998….the 17,981,000 barrels per day of oil that were refined this week were the most barrels refined in any week on record, topping the record level set just seven weeks ago during the week ending June 22nd, and capping off an 11 week run when our seasonal refinery throughput was higher than ever before…hence, this week’s refinery throughput was also 2.4% higher than the 17,565,000 barrels of crude per day that were being processed during the week ending August 11th 2017, when US refineries were operating at 96.1% of capacity….

with our oil refining now at a new record high, we’ll take a look at a graph of the recent history of that metric for some perspective…

August 15 2018 refinery throughput as of Aug 10

the above graph of US refinery throughput came from the weekly package of oil graphs that John Kemp, senior energy analyst and columnist with Reuters, provides by email on Wednesdays, which is also available as a pdf here; it shows US refinery throughput in thousands of barrels per day by “day of the year” for the past ten years, with the past ten year range of our refinery throughput for any given date shown as a light blue shaded area, and the median of our refinery throughput, or the middle of the 10 year daily range, traced by the blue dashes over each day of the year….the graph also shows the number of barrels of oil refined for each week in 2017 traced by a yellow line, with our year to date oil refining for each week of 2018 traced by the red graph…you can clearly see that except for the disruptions to refining caused by last year’s hurricanes, 2017’s refining in yellow had been at the top of the historical range almost all year, and that the pace of refining in 2018 in red has generally been above that, except for during  late April and May…you can also see that the summer is usually when refiners see their seasonal highs, so given that we’ve been running refineries at a pace above that of the prior years for almost two years running, a breakout to a new record high at this time of year was not unexpected…

with the record amount of oil being refined this week, gasoline output from our refineries was considerably higher, increasing by 321,000 barrels per day to 10,234,000 barrels per day during the week ending August 10th, after our refineries’ gasoline output had inexplicably decreased by 570,000 barrels per day during the week ending August 3rd…as a result of this week’s increase, our gasoline production during the week was 1.9% higher than the 10,048,000 barrels of gasoline that were being produced daily during the same week of last year…meanwhile, our refineries’ production of distillate fuels (diesel fuel and heat oil) rose by 100,000 barrels per day to a seasonal high of 5,337,000 barrels per day, after rising by 78,000 barrels per day over the prior week…however, this week’s distillates production was only 0.9% higher than the 5,287,000 barrels of distillates per day that were being produced during the week ending August 11th, 2017…

however, even with the increase in our gasoline production, our supply of gasoline in storage at the end of the week still fell by 740,000 barrels to 233,128,000 barrels by August 10th, the 15th decrease in 25 weeks, but just the 16th decrease in 40 weeks, as gasoline inventories, as usual, were being built up over the winter months….our supplies of gasoline fell this week because our exports of gasoline rose by 347,000 barrels per day to 935,000 barrels per day while our imports of gasoline fell by 272,000 barrels per day to 663,000 barrels per day, and because the amount of gasoline supplied to US markets rose by 166,000 barrels per day to 9,512,000 barrels per day, after falling by 532,000 barrels per day the prior week…but even after this week’s decrease, our gasoline inventories were still fractionally higher than last August 11th’s level of 231,125,000 barrels, and roughly 9.4% above the 10 year average of our gasoline supplies for this time of the year…     

meanwhile, with the increase in our distillates production, our supplies of distillate fuels increased by 3,566,000 barrels to 128,989,000 barrels during the week ending August 10th, the 9th increase in 12 weeks…our supplies increased as the amount of distillates supplied to US markets, a proxy for our domestic consumption, fell by 43,000 barrels per day to 3,959,000 barrels per day, after increasing by 391,000 barrels per day the prior week, and as our exports of distillates fell by 185,000 barrels per day to 1,043,000 barrels per day,  while our imports of distillates rose by 5,000 barrels per day to 174,000 barrels per day….however, since our distillate supplies are still coming off a 14 year seasonal low hit just 3 weeks ago, after falling during a time of year when distillates supplies are usually increasing, this week’s inventory increase still leaves our distillates supplies 13.1% below the 148,387,000 barrels that we had stored on August 11th, 2017, and roughly 12.8% lower than the 10 year average of distillates stocks for this time of the year…     

finally, with our oil imports increasing by nearly 1.1 million barrels per day, our commercial supplies of crude oil increased for the 16th time in 2018 and for the 22nd time in the past year, rising by 6,805,000 barrels during the week, from 407,389,000 barrels on August 3rd to 414,194,000 barrels on August 10th…that increase now means our crude oil inventories are now a bit above the five year average of crude oil supplies for this time of year for the first time this year, and roughly 24% above the 10 year average of crude oil stocks for the 2nd week of August…however, since our crude oil inventories had been falling through most of the past year and a half, our oil supplies as of August 10th were still 11.2% below the 466,492,000 barrels of oil we had stored on August 11th of 2017, 15.6% below the 490,461,000 barrels of oil that we had in storage on August 12th of 2016, and 2.4% below the 424,442,000 barrels of oil we had in storage on July 31st of 2015, when US supplies of oil had already risen above the nearly stable levels of under 400 million barrels we saw during the prior years…   

OPEC’s Monthly Oil Market Report 

next we’ll take a look at OPEC’s August Oil Market Report (covering July OPEC & global oil data), which was released on Monday and is available as a free download, and hence it’s the report we check for monthly global oil supply and demand data…the first table from this monthly report that we’ll look at is from the page numbered 57 of that report (pdf page 65), and it shows oil production in thousands of barrels per day for each of the current OPEC members over the recent years, quarters and months, as the column headings indicate…for all their official production measurements, OPEC uses an average of estimates from six “secondary sources”, namely the International Energy Agency (IEA), the oil-pricing agencies Platts and Argus, ‎the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), the oil consultancy Cambridge Energy Research Associates (CERA) and the industry newsletter Petroleum Intelligence Weekly, as an impartial adjudicator as to whether their output quotas and production cuts are being met, to thus resolve any potential disputes that could arise if each member reported their own figures…

July 2018 OPEC crude output via secondary sources

as we can see on this table of official oil production data, OPEC’s oil output increased by 40,700 barrels per day to 32,323,000 barrels per day in July, from their June production total of 32,283,000 barrels per day….however, that June figure was originally reported as 32,327,000 barrels per day, so OPEC’s June output was therefore revised 44,000 barrels per day lower with this report (for your reference, here is the table of the official June OPEC output figures as reported a month ago, before this month’s revisions)…as you can tell from the far right column above, increases of 78,500 barrels per day in the oil output from Kuwait, of 70,500 barrels per day in the output from Nigeria, and of 69,200 barrels per day in the output from the Emirates were the primary reasons that the cartel’s output rose, as those increases offset the decrease of 56,700 barrels per day in Libyan output, the decrease of 56,300 barrels per day in Iranian output, the decrease of 56,200 barrels per day in Saudi output, and the decrease of 47,700 barrels per day in Venezuelan output…the OPEC pledge to pump more oil in the second half of 2018 notwithstanding, OPEC’s output excluding new member Congo was at 32,010,000 barrels per day in July, still 720,000 barrels per day below the 32,730,000 barrels per day revised quota they agreed to at their November 2017 meeting, mostly on the big drop in Venezuelan output… 

the next graphic we’ll include shows us both OPEC and world monthly oil production on the same graph, over the period from August 2016 to July 2018, and it comes from the page numbered 58 (pdf page 66) of the August OPEC Monthly Oil Market Report…on this graph, the cerulean blue bars represent OPEC oil production in millions of barrels per day as shown on the left scale, while the purple graph represents global oil production in millions of barrels per day, with the metrics for global output shown on the right scale…      

July 2018 OPEC report global oil supply

OPEC’s preliminary estimate indicates that total global oil production rose by a rounded 680,000 barrels per day to a record high 98.53 million barrels per day in July, apparently after June’s global output total was revised down by 160,000 barrels per day from the 98.01 million barrels per day global oil output that was reported a month ago, as non-OPEC oil production rose by 640,000 barrels per day in July after that revision….global oil output for July was also 1.74 million barrels per day, or 1.3% higher than the 97.30 million barrels of oil per day that were being produced globally in July a year ago (see the August 2017 OPEC report online (pdf) for the year ago details)…with the jump in global output, OPEC’s July oil production of 32,323,000 barrels per day represented 32.8% of what was produced globally during the month, down from their 33.0% of global share reported for June…OPEC’s July 2017 production was at 32,869,000 barrels per day, which means that the 13 OPEC members who were part of OPEC last year, excluding new members Congo and Equatorial Guinea, are now producing 985,000 fewer barrels per day of oil than they were producing a year ago, during the seventh month that their production quotas were in effect, with a 432,000 barrel per day decrease in output from Venezuela and a 337,000 barrel per day decrease in output from Libya from that time largely responsible for the cartel’s output drop… 

despite the 680,000 barrel per day increase in global oil output in July, an increase in summertime demand meant that we again saw a deficit in the amount of oil being produced globally during the month, as this next table from the OPEC report will show us… 

July 2018 OPEC report global oil demand

the table above comes from page 31 of the July  OPEC Monthly Oil Market Report (pdf page 39), and it shows regional and total oil demand in millions of barrels per day for 2017 in the first column, and OPEC’s estimate of oil demand by region and globally quarterly over 2018 over the rest of the table…on the “Total world” line of the fourth column, we’ve circled in blue the figure that’s relevant for July, which is their revised estimate of global oil demand during the third quarter of 2018…     

OPEC’s estimate is that during the 3rd quarter of this year, all oil consuming regions of the globe will be using 99.44 million barrels of oil per day, which was a upward revision of a rounded 0.03 million barrels of oil per day from their prior estimate for the quarter….meanwhile, as OPEC showed us in the oil supply section of this report and the summary supply graph above, the world’s oil producers were producing 98.53 million barrels per day during July, which means that there was a shortfall of around 910,000 barrels per day in global oil production vis-a vis the demand estimated for the month…  

note that this report also revised oil demand figures for the 1st and second quarters, which we’ve circled in green; that means our previous estimates of surplus or shortfall for those months will have to be revised as well…a month ago, we estimated there was a small shortfall of around 30,000 barrels per day in global oil production vis-a vis the demand in June…while oil demand for the 2nd quarter was revised 120,000 barrels per day lower (as you see in the green ellipse above), we also noted earlier that June’s global oil output total was revised down by 160,000 barrels per day from the 98.01 million barrels per day global total that was reported a month ago; that means our revised oil shortfall for June will be around 70,000 barrels per day…

with the downward revision of 120,000 barrels per day to 2nd quarter demand, the shortfall for May now works out to 510,000 barrels per day, revised from the 630,000 barrel per day shortfall we had figured on a month ago….the 2nd quarter revision to global demand also means that the global shortfall for April would be revised from the 440,000 barrels per day that we figured last month to 320,000 barrels per day… 

however, as is also circled in green above, while global oil demand figures for the second quarter were revised lower, global oil demand figures for the first quarter of 2018 were revised 10,000 barrels per day higher, which means that our previously recomputed oil surplus for the first quarter of 2018 will also have to be recomputed again….since we had figured a global oil surplus of 130,000 barrels per day for March, a surplus of 310,000 barrels per day for February, and a surplus of 150,000 barrels per day for January, the revision means that our new figures show a surplus of 120,000 barrels per day for March, a surplus of 300,000 barrels per day for February, and a surplus of 140,000 barrels per day for January….totaling up all these estimates, that would mean that for the first seven months of 2018, global oil demand exceeded production by roughly 39,260,000 barrels, a relatively small net oil shortfall that is the equivalent of roughly nine and a half hours of global oil production at the July production rate…  

This Week’s Rig Count

the pace of US drilling activity stalled during the week ending August 17th, after increasing 15 out of the most recent 20 weeks….Baker Hughes reported that the total count of rotary rigs running in the US was unchanged at 1057 rigs over the week ending on Friday, which was still 111 more rigs than the 946 rigs that were in use as of the August 18th report of 2017, but was still down from the shale era high of 1929 drilling rigs that were deployed on November 21st of 2014, the week before OPEC began their attempt to flood the global oil market…    

the count of rigs drilling for oil was unchanged at 869 rigs this week, which was still 106 more oil rigs than were running a year ago, while it was still well below the recent high of 1609 rigs that were drilling for oil on October 10, 2014…at the same time, the number of drilling rigs targeting natural gas formations was also unchanged at 186 rigs this week, which was up by 4 rigs from the 182 natural gas rigs that were drilling a year ago, but way down from the modern high of 1,606 natural gas rigs that were deployed on August 29th, 2008…in addition, rigs drilling two exploratory wells considered to be “miscellaneous” continued this week, also unchanged, in contrast to a year ago, when all rigs were specifically targeting either oil or gas..

another Gulf of Mexico drilling platform was started back up this week, so there are now 19 rigs drilling in the Gulf of Mexico, up from the 16 rigs that were drilling in the Gulf last year at this time…in addition, two rigs continued drilling offshore from Alaska this week, so the total national offshore count is now at 21 rigs, up from a total of 16 offshore rigs a year ago, a time when there was no drilling elsewhere other than in the Gulf…

the count of active horizontal drilling rigs was down by 2 rigs to 922 horizontal rigs this week, which was still 123 more horizontal rigs than the 799 horizontal rigs that were in use in the US on August 18th of last year, but down from the record of 1372 horizontal rigs that were deployed on November 21st of 2014…at the same time, the vertical rig count decreased by 4 rigs to 65 vertical rigs this week, which was also down from the 66 vertical rigs that were in use during the same week of last year…on the other hand, the directional rig count increased by 6 directional rigs this week, which was still down from the 81 directional rigs that were operating on August 18th of 2017… 

the details on this week’s changes in drilling activity by state and by shale basin are included in our screenshot below of that part of the rig count summary pdf from Baker Hughes that shows those changes…the first table below shows weekly and year over year rig count changes for the major producing states, and the second table shows the weekly and year over year rig count changes for the major US geological oil and gas basins…in both tables, the first column shows the active rig count as of August 17th, the second column shows the change in the number of working rigs between last week’s count (August 10th) and this week’s (August 17th) count, the third column shows last week’s August 10th active rig count, the 4th column shows the change between the number of rigs running on Friday and those of the equivalent weekend report of a year ago, and the 5th column shows the number of rigs that were drilling at the end of that reporting week a year ago, which in this week’s case was on Friday the 18th of August, 2017…       

August 17 2018 rig count summary

there’s not much that isn’t obvious here, except that it appears that at least two and probably three rigs that had been drilling in the Permian on the New Mexico side of the Texas border were either shut down or moved to Texas this week, as the core Permian Texas Oil District saw an increase of three rigs, and Texas District 7B, at the edge of the Permian, also saw an additional rig start up…outside of the Permian, note the large number of rig reductions spread throughout the other major basins, including the 3 rig drop in the Cana Woodford or Oklahoma and the decreases of two rigs each in the Mississippian Lime of the Kansas-Oklahoma border region and the Granite Wash of the Texas-Oklahoma panhandle region; we would not be seeing drilling pullbacks like that in those oil-bearing strata if fracking were a highly profitable venture at current oil prices, given there is still some degree of price backwardation…for rigs targeting natural gas, which were on net unchanged, we have an increase of two in the Pennsylvania Marcellus, an increase of one in the Arkoma Woodford of Oklahoma, and an increase of one in the Granite Wash, where three oil rigs were shut down at the same time, offset by rig decreases in Ohio’s Utica shale, the West Virginia Marcellus, the Louisiana Haynesville, and one in a basin not tracked separately by Baker Hughes…we’ll also note that outside of the major producing states shown above, Nebraska had the rig that started up last week shut down this week; i dont really know what that’s about, since the state has only seen oilfield activity for two weeks over the past two years…

DUC well report for July

Monday of this past week also saw the release of the EIA’s Drilling Productivity Report for August, which includes the EIA’s July data for drilled but uncompleted oil and gas wells in the 7 most productive shale regions…for the 22nd consecutive month, this report again showed an increase in uncompleted wells nationally in June, even as drilling of new wells was down for the 2nd consecutive month….like most previous months, this month’s uncompleted well increase was due to a big increase of newly drilled but uncompleted wells (DUCs) in the Permian basin of west Texas, with a modest increase of uncompleted wells in the Eagle Ford of south Texas also contributing…for all 7 sedimentary regions covered by this report, the total count of DUC wells increased by 165, from 7,868 wells in June to 8,033 wells in July, again the highest number of such unfracked wells in the history of this report….that was as 1,441 wells were drilled in the 7 regions that this report covers (representing 87% of all U.S. onshore drilling operations) during July, down from 1,448 in June, while 1,276 wells were completed and brought into production by fracking, a increase of one completion over the prior month…hence, at the July completion rate, the 8,033 drilled but uncompleted wells left at the end of the month represent a 6.3 month backlog of wells that have been drilled but not yet fracked…

as has been the case for most of the past two years, the July DUC well increases were predominantly oil wells, with most of those in the Permian basin…the Permian saw its total count of uncompleted wells rise by 167, from 3,303 DUC wells in June to 3,470 DUCs in July, as 601 new wells were drilled into the Permian but only 434 wells in the region were fracked…at the same time, DUC wells in the Eagle Ford of south Texas rose by 32, from 1,480 DUC wells in June to 1,512 DUCs in July, as 207 wells were drilled in the Eagle Ford during July, while 175 Eagle Ford wells were completed…over the same period, the number of DUC wells in the Anadarko region centered in & around Oklahoma increased by 7 to 923, as 167 wells were drilled into the Anadarko basin while 160 Anadarko wells were fracked….in addition, DUC wells in the Bakken of North Dakota rose by 4, from 756 DUC wells in June to 760 DUCs in July, as 131 wells were drilled into the Bakken in July while 127 drilled wells in that basin were completed…meanwhile, the natural gas producing Haynesville shale of the northern Louisiana-Texas border region saw their uncompleted well inventory remain unchanged at 182, as 54 wells were drilled into the Haynesville during July, while 54 Haynesville wells were fracked during the same period…on the other hand, the drilled but uncompleted well count in the Niobrara chalk of the Rockies front range decreased by 40 to 432, as just 158 Niobrara wells were being drilled while 198 Niobrara wells were being fracked…similarly, the drilled but uncompleted well count in the Appalachian region, which includes the Utica shale, fell by 5 wells, from 759 DUCs in June to 754 DUCs in July, as 123 wells were drilled into the Marcellus and Utica shales, while 128 of the already drilled wells in the region were fracked….thus, for the month of July, DUCs in the 5 oil basins tracked by in this report (ie., the Anadarko, Bakken, Niobrara, Permian, and Eagle Ford) increased by 170 wells to 7,097 wells, while the uncompleted well count in the natural gas regions (the Marcellus, Utica, and the Haynesville) decreased by a net of 5 wells to 936 wells, although as the report notes, once into production, more than half the wells drilled nationally will produce both oil and gas…   

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