Bakken Oil Production Up Slightly

Bakken Production
Bakken Production

North Dakota saw increased production in July after slipping for two months.

Related: Bakken Production Expected to Decline

In April, the EIA predicted that production had peaked across the U.S. at 9.7 million barrels per day, the highest level since 1971. This proved to be true as production fell in May by 50,000 barrels per day and in June, Bakken shale month-over-month crude oil production dipped 1.3%.

This week, Bentek Energy reported a slight increase in oil production for North Dakota in July, saying that the Bakken formation follows closely behind the Eagle Ford Basin in terms of efficiency gains and internal rates of return. Drill times in the Bakken dropped from about 15 days per well in late 2014 to about 13 days per well during the second quarter of this year.

Bentek analyst, Sami Yahya, explained “Substantial cost savings protocols alongside reduced drill times have kept internal rates of return in the Bakken shale formation among the best in the country. Current rates of return in the Bakken shale formation are around 15%, which is comparable to the 18% found in the Eagle Ford Basin.

Crude oil dropped below $40 this week, adding strain to a difficult situation. Second quarter earnings for many companies showed signs that they are shifting their priorities from growth to survival.

  • Shell: Profits fell sharply, resulting in cuts to company’s capital investment and an elimination 6,500 jobs
  • Chevron: Its upstream businesses were particularly hard hit and they will lay off roughly 2% of its global workforce
  • ExxonMobil: Profits fell 52% and company announced it is taking steps to mitigate the harsh climate for oil and gas majors and capital expenditures were cut 16% last quarter
  • BP: Revenue and profits were all lower than expected and company announced it is positioning itself for a period of weaker prices