Crude Oil Futures Dive on Friday as Rig Count and Production Rise

Crude prices plunged on Friday resulting in a loss of nearly 4% for the week, as a rise in domestic oil production and an uptick in the active rig count troubled investors, according to Bloomberg MarketWatch.

On the New York Mercantile Exchange, August West Texas Intermediate crude fell $1.29, or 2.8%, to settle at $44.23 a barrel. For the week, prices were down roughly 3.9% to mark their sixth loss in seven weeks.

On the London ICE Futures Exchange, September Brent crude, the global benchmark, dropped $1.40, or 2.9%, to end trading at $46.71 a barrel. For the week, Brent crude was nearly 4.2% lower.

Baker Hughes reported that the number of active domestic oil rigs climbed by 7 to 763 this week.

“No surprise that more rigs were added this week, and it would take a prolonged period of $35 to $40 per barrel prices to really put the brakes on this,” said Richard Hastings, macro strategist at Seaport Global Securities.

On Thursday, the Energy Information Administration reported that crude levels in U.S. storage fell by 6.3 million barrels in the week ending June 30, while total domestic production edged up by 88,000 barrels to 9.338 million barrels a day.

Hastings said the rebound in domestic crude production last week is a key reason why oil prices headed lower Friday.

Natural gas prices on Friday ended the session lower as well. August natural gas fell 2.4 cents, or 0.8%, to settle at $2.864 per million British thermal units on the New York Mercantile Exchange. For the week, natural gas was down 5.6%.

 

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