HOUSTON—Oilfield services company Baker Hughes Inc. says the number of rigs exploring for oil and natural gas in the U.S. increased by 12 this week to 1,775.

The Houston-based company said in its weekly report Friday that 1,397 rigs were exploring for oil and 375 for gas. Three were listed as miscellaneous. A year ago there were 1,800 active rigs.

Of the major oil- and gas-producing states, Texas gained eight rigs, Oklahoma rose by five, California gained two and Alaska, Utah and West Virginia each increased by one.

Louisiana and Pennsylvania each dropped two rigs, while Colorado and North Dakota lost one each. Arkansas, Kansas, New Mexico, Ohio and Wyoming remained unchanged.

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


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