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US rig count decreases by 2 this week


July 22, 2017

US rig count decreases by 2 this week

HOUSTON (AP) — The number of rigs exploring for oil and natural gas in the U.S. decreased by two this week to 950.

A year ago, just 462 rigs were active.

Houston oilfield services company Baker Hughes said Friday that 764 rigs sought oil and 186 explored for natural gas this week.

Among major oil- and gas-producing states, Louisiana gained four rigs, California increased by two and North Dakota and Utah each gained one.

Oklahoma and Texas each declined by three, New Mexico fell by two and Alaska decreased by one.

Arkansas, Colorado, Ohio, Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Wyoming were all unchanged.

The U.S. rig count peaked at 4,530 in 1981. It bottomed out in May of 2016 at 404.

Wyoming hospital loses Medicare and Medicaid standing

CHEYENNE (AP) — Cheyenne Regional Medical Center recently lost its standing that hospitals need to serve Medicare and Medicaid patients.

The Wyoming Tribune Eagle reported Friday that the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services removed the medical center of its “deemed status” because of a substantiated complaint.

The hospital has filed an action plan of correction to get the deemed status returned. It will be returned if the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services approves of the plan.

Craig Luzinski, one of the medical center’s vice presidents, said he could not release much information about the specifics of the complaint because of patient confidentiality. But he said the complaint was limited to one patient and focused on the process of determining whether patients are properly prepared to leave the hospital.

Jobless rates fall below 4 pct. in nearly half US states

WASHINGTON (AP) — Hiring rose last month in 14 U.S. states in June, and the unemployment rate fell to record lows in two states, evidence that the job market is getting tighter across much of the country.

The Labor Department said Friday that unemployment rates fell in 10 states and rose in only 2. Rates were stable in the other 38 states.

After five years of steady hiring, unemployment rates have fallen below 4 percent in 23 states. Unemployment that low suggests that those states are at “full employment,” when nearly everyone who wants a job has one and the unemployment rate reflects the normal churn of hiring and firing.

The rate has fallen below 3 percent in five states: Colorado, Hawaii, Nebraska, New Hampshire and North Dakota.

When unemployment falls that low, businesses may be forced to raise pay to compete for scarce workers. So far, wage gains nationwide remain at about 2.5 percent a year, below the 3.5 percent pace normally associated with a healthy economy.

North Dakota’s unemployment rate fell to 2.3 percent, a record low for the state dating back to 1976 and tying for lowest in the nation with Colorado. Tennessee’s rate of 3.6 percent is also a record low for that state.

Nationwide, employers added 222,000 jobs in June, the most in four months. The unemployment rate ticked up to a still-low 4.4 percent from 4.3 percent.

Nevada, Iowa and Georgia reported the largest percentage job gains, followed by Nebraska and West Virginia. The biggest job gain was in Texas, which added 40,200 positions, followed by Georgia with 27,400 and New York with 26,000.

Alaska’s unemployment rate of 6.8 percent is the nation’s highest, followed by New Mexico at 6.4 percent.


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