NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwire -07/03/12)- It has been a tough year for the Oil & Gas Equipment & Services Industry as plummeting natural gas prices have seen the number of natural gas rigs drop to their lowest levels in 10 years. A weak global economy has seen commodity prices slide in 2012 and as a result oil services stocks have suffered. Five Star Equities examines the outlook for companies in the Oil & Gas Equipment & Services Industry and provides equity research on Baker Hughes Inc. (BHI) and National Oilwell Varco, Inc. (NOV).
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The emergence of "fracking" saw the number of natural gas rigs in the U.S. jump from 591 in April 2002 to a peak of over 1,600 in August 2008 according to data from Baker Hughes. The number of natural gas rigs has since fallen to a low of 530 rigs currently operating in the U.S. Yet falling gas prices have seen exploration and production companies shift their focus from natural gas to the more lucrative oil business. The number of oil rigs has jumped from 400 in August 2008 to approximately 1,400 today, with 97 percent of those rigs are on land.
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Baker Hughes Inc. recently announced that the international rig count for May 2012 was 1,225, up 47 from the 1,178 counted in April 2012, and up 74 from the 1,151 counted in May 2011. The international offshore rig count for May 2012 was 319, up 20 from the 299 counted in April 2012 and up 13 from the 306 counted in May 2011.
National Oilwell Varco is a worldwide leader in the design, manufacture and sale of equipment and components used in oil and gas drilling and production operations, the provision of oilfield services, and supply chain integration services to the upstream oil and gas industry. The company recently announced the closing of its previously announced acquisition of Wilson distribution business segment from Schlumberger Limited. Wilson is a leading distributor of pipe, valves and fittings as well as mill, tool and safety products and services.
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