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New normal in oil patch points to a soft landing

Posted 9/19/17 (Tue)

New normal in oil patch points to a soft landing

By Cecile Wehrman

The state’s head of mineral resources expects to see $50 oil later this year or early next year, and with it, steady production to help shore up North Dakota’s economy.

“We’re going to see some significant, but not spiky, sorts of price increases,” said Lynn Helms, during his monthly press briefing, held Friday.

Helms calls $50 per barrel oil the “magic number” to increase the number of frac crews from 24 or 25  to 30 or more. The result should be a reduction in the number of uncompleted wells, which continues to hover above 850.

“At $50 a barrel, shale operators are going to start bringing frac crews on,” Helms said. “I have a lot of confidence that by the end of the year or early next year, we’ll see sustained $50 oil.”

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