Rig market - OE October 2010

OE's analysis of current rig market data is updated monthly using statistics provided by Rigzone.com

Worldwide utilization for the mobile offshore drilling fleet has averaged 74% over the last two months. Of late the global utilization rates for both drillships and semisubs have seen a slight uptick. Global jackup utilization has been weighted down by a lack of activity or demand for commodity rigs that drill in shallow waters.

Looking specifically at the rig fleet in the Gulf of Mexico (both US and Mexican waters), the domestic rigs that are working in deeper waters are not drilling new wells due to suspension instituted by the Department of Interior and BOEMRE. Shallow water drilling has also been impacted as permit approvals now just trickle instead of the steady flow that occurred prior to the Macondo oil spill.

Overall rig utilization in the Gulf of Mexico currently stands at 59% with jackups pulling the average down. Jackup utilization has been trending lower since June and is currently 52%.

In contrast, floater utilization in the region is approximately 80%. However, this number includes rigs that are under contract but actually on stand-by while awaiting the US government to allow the resumption of exploratory drilling.

Activity level for deepwater rigs is much lower than the utilization rate would suggest for the region . OE

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