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Report: Wyoming rig count rises, severance tax collections up 75.6% in June amid high oil, gas prices

(Dan Cepeda, Oil City News)

CASPER, Wyo. — The high price of gasoline may be painful for consumers at the pump, but it has also led to an increase in the number of oil and gas rigs operating in Wyoming as well as severance tax revenues for the state.

Oil and gas rig counts hit a low point in 2020 amid the COVID-19 pandemic, but have since recovered to a total of 17 oil rigs and three gas rigs operating in Wyoming in June 2022, according to the June 2022 issue of the Wyoming MACRO Report released by the Wyoming Economic Analysis Division on Tuesday.

Severance tax collections on all minerals across the state were up $34.2 million in June 2022 compared with June 2021, a 75.6% increase, according to the report. From April–June 2022, severance tax collections were up 43.8% compared with the same period in 2021.

Oil and gas jobs in Wyoming stood at around 8,100 in May, up 700 from May 2021, the report said.

A backdrop of some of the oil and gas industry trends is the high price of natural gas and oil. In June, the Henry Hub price of natural gas averaged $7.67/MMBtu, $4.44 higher than in June 2021, according to the report. The West Texas Intermediate oil price averaged $114.84/barrel in June 2022, $43.46 higher than in June 2021.

The 4% statewide sales and use tax collections in fiscal year 2022, which ended June 30, were $81.9 million higher compared with FY 2021, according to the Economic Analysis Division. Sales and use tax collections specifically from the mining sector were up $27.4 million in FY 2022 compared with FY 2021, a 57.5% increase, the report said.

Statewide employment overall experienced an increase of 5,400 jobs in May 2022 compared with May 2021, the report said. Casper saw an increase of 500 jobs and Cheyenne added 900 jobs in the year-over-year comparison of May 2022 to May 2021.

There is a range of other economic data included in the full June 2022 MACRO Report from the Wyoming Economic Analysis Division, including graphs showing trends in the economic data. The full report can be reviewed below: