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US drops 26 to 1,800 rigs exploring for oil, gas

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[November 03, 2012]  HOUSTON (AP) -- The number of rigs actively exploring for oil and natural gas in the U.S. dropped this week by 26 to 1,800.

Texas-based oilfield services company Baker Hughes Inc. reported Friday that 1,373 rigs were exploring for oil and 424 were searching for gas. Three were listed as miscellaneous. A year ago, Baker Hughes listed 2,026 rigs.

Of the major oil- and gas-producing states, Texas dropped 20 rigs, Colorado lost seven, North Dakota decreased by six, Alaska and California each lost two, while New Mexico decreased by one. Oklahoma added six rigs, while Arkansas, Louisiana, West Virginia and Wyoming each gained one. Pennsylvania remained unchanged.

The rig count peaked at 4,530 in 1981 and bottomed at 488 in 1999.

[Associated Press]

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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