Many in the industry have considered pinning down the number for drilled but uncompleted wells (DUCs) elusive.Raymond James Equity Research firm has publicly said that “if anyone tells you they know the [DUC] number, they haven’t done the work” and “frankly, any definite answer regarding the DUC question is conveying a completely false sense of precision.” They described the task of figuring it out as “Sisyphean,” referring to the Greek mythological king Sisyphus who was punished by being forced to roll an immense boulder up a hill, only to watch it roll back down.
Despite all the warnings Drillinginfo felt this number was too important to the oil and gas industry not to do something. I am happy to report the work has been done and that Sisyphus’s boulder is staying put. It could not have come at a better time. While in the past DUCs were not really an issue, today they could not be more relevant. Due to the fall in oil prices in 2014 a large inventory of US DUC’s has been building up, making them a market factor affecting future oil prices as they represent additional crude oil supply that could come back online quickly after prices rebound.
Whether you are an operator, oilfield services company, or financial services firm having your “DUC’s in a row” by knowing who, what, and where the DUC’s are can be a huge competitive advantage in today’s market. As an operator you need to understand where all competitor DUCs are located to make tactical decisions about what assets to buy or sell, which company owned DUCs make sense to bring online, and how much leverage to use with vendors. For oilfield service companies looking to complete DUCs you need to get there before the competition by identifying which DUCs will most likely be completed based on assumed breakeven oil prices. Finally, for equity and debt analysts, you need to know the most accurate value for E&Ps DUCs inventory to make well informed equity and debt investments.
A key part of the analysis and the reason Sisyphus’ boulder doesn’t roll back down the hill is that with DI Rig Analytics DUC counts update in real time. Any number published in the past was obsolete before the ink dried making all the hard work of figuring it out truly “Sisyphean.” Drillinginfo relies on a proprietary algorithm which uses GPS devices on over 95% of the US rig fleet ensuring the cleanest, and most reliable data set in the market.
Drillinginfo DUCs Intelligence is available for the following states with sufficient data coverage and appropriate reporting requirements: Alabama, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Louisiana, Montana, North Dakota, New Mexico, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Texas, Utah and Wyoming.
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