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Lynn Helms - Director's Cut

Oct 10, 2017


Lynn HelmsOil Production
July - 32,491,069 barrels = 1,048,099 barrels/day
August - 33,625,401 barrels = 1,084,690 barrels/day (preliminary) (all-time high was Dec 2014 at 1,227,483 barrels/day)

Gas Production
July - 58,779,995 MCF = 1,896,129 MCF/day
August -60,240,375 MCF = 1,943,238 MCF/day (preliminary) (NEW all-time high)

Comments:
The drilling rig count increased two from July to August, then remained unchanged from August to September, and is currently up one from September to today.  Operators have shifted from running the minimum number of rigs to incremental increases and decreases as WTI oil price moves between $40 and $50/barrel.  If WTI drops below $45/barrel for more than 30 days, rig count is expected to drop. If WTI remains above $55/barrel for more than 90 days, rig count is expected to rise.

The number of well completions has become highly variable from 95 in July to 63 (preliminary) in August.

Oil price weakness is now anticipated to last through calendar year 2017.  OPEC met the last week of August and decided to extend production cuts for nine months, but compliance has been less than 100%.  OPEC meets again in November and members are currently discussing support for extending cuts to mid-2018.  The markets are watching to see if US shale production offsets OPEC cuts.  US crude oil inventories rose due to hurricanes, but have fallen the last two weeks. IEA and EIA have raised estimates for 2017 and 2018 demand.

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