- Associated Press - Friday, March 24, 2017

HOUSTON (AP) - The number of rigs exploring for oil and natural gas in the U.S. increased by 20 this week to 809.

A year ago, 464 rigs were active.

Houston oilfield services company Baker Hughes Inc. said Friday that 652 rigs sought oil and 155 explored for natural gas this week. Two were listed as miscellaneous.

Texas increased by eight rigs and Oklahoma added seven. New Mexico rose by three while Alaska, California, North Dakota, Pennsylvania and West Virginia gained one each.

Louisiana declined by two and Wyoming by one.



Arkansas, Colorado, Kansas, Ohio, and Utah were all unchanged.

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

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