Source: Platts RigData Day Rate Report | April 2017
AC-powered rigs, especially Class D (1,500–1,999 hp) models have dominated drilling over the past decade in line with the overwhelming dominance of horizontal drilling in unconventional plays. Until the recent downturn, rigbuilders could scarcely churn them out fast enough, and top drillers were fielding them at an unprecedented rate.
Consequently, they drove the US average day rate, aggregated across all rigs and regions, to an all-time record high in October 2014, according to Platts RigData’s Day Rate Report. When the industry bust hit, AC rigs also led the way down, yielding some of the biggest sequential declines during 2015–2016. But the abrupt turnabout in day rates leading into the first quarter of 2017 illustrates that AC rigs are enjoying the biggest rebound among rig power types.
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