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Offshore drilling contractor Noble's loss widens on $793 mln charge

(Adds details on rig utilization and dayrate)

Aug 2 (Reuters) - Offshore oil and gas drilling contractor Noble Corp Plc reported a bigger quarterly loss on Thursday, hurt by a $792.8 million impairment expense related to drilling rigs and other equipment.

The company, which operates largely in the Gulf of Mexico, has been retiring deep-water rigs as oil producers move away from offshore drilling to cheaper land-based shale.

Noble had 54 percent of its fleet in operation in the second quarter of 2018, down from 65 percent a year earlier. The average dayrate for its rigs rose 10 percent to $180,689.

Net loss attributable to the company increased to $628.1 million or $2.55 per share in the three months ended June 30, from $93.4 million or 38 cents per share a year ago.

Revenue fell to $258.4 million from $278.1 million. (Reporting by Karan Nagarkatti in Bengaluru)