North Dakota oil production declines slightly in February; drilling rigs continue steady drop

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BISMARCK, North Dakota — Oil production in North Dakota slipped slightly from January to February as crude prices continued to decline.

State Mineral Resources Director Lynn Helms says production in February was 1.18 million barrels a day, down from 1.19 million barrels in January and a record 1.23 million barrels in December.

The number of drilling rigs fell from 160 in January to 133 in February. Helms says they have continued to decline to 91 on Tuesday, the lowest number since January 2010. The record high was 218 rigs in May 2012.

North Dakota sweet crude was fetching about $36.25 a barrel on Tuesday. That's down $100 from a record high set in 2008.

Helms says "oil price is by far the biggest driver behind the slowdown."

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