Texas Oil Companies Add 30,000 Workers in 12 Months

Monday, November 13, 2017

Longview News-Journal | November 7, 2017

Texas oil companies have hired about 30,000 workers in the past year, a sharp turnaround after laying off a third of the industry's statewide workforce during the oil bust that began in late 2014.

The number of Texas oil and gas workers reached more than 222,000 in September, up 16 percent from about 192,000 a year earlier, according to economist Karr Ingham in the latest Texas Petro Index. At the peak of the oil boom in 2014, Texas had more 295,000 oil company jobs.

Boosted by job growth, modest increases in upstream activity and stable oil prices, the index, a measure of activity in the state's energy industry, rose for a 10th consecutive month in September, to 181.4 points, up 21.4 percent from September 2016.

"Crude oil prices in Texas have been the essence of stability for more than a year," Ingham said in a statement. "Demand is beginning to show signs of recovery, and foreign oil suppliers led by OPEC appear to be committed to maintaining announced production cuts." 

Other highlights:

  • Crude oil production during September totaled more than 103.4 million barrels, up 11.6 percent from a year ago.
  • Estimated natural gas output declined 2.7 percent from last year to this year to slightly more than 639.4 billion cubic feet. 
  • The Baker Hughes Inc. count of active drilling rigs in Texas averaged 453 units, 85.7 percent more than in September 2016, when an average of 244 rigs were working.
  • The number of original drilling permits issued was 903, up 21 percent from 746 permits issued in September 2016.
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