US oilfield employment rose in November month/month, with gains in all six tracked categories, according to the trade group Energy Workforce & Technology Council.
Domestic jobs in the broad oilfield services and equipment sector, aka OFS, climbed by an estimated 2,346 jobs to 645,486 in November, the preliminary data from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) indicated.
The rise in jobs came following adjustments by BLS to October numbers and an analysis by the Energy Workforce. The October adjusted number of 643,139 is up from the preliminary figure of 640,282.
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“The latest increase in our sector is very encouraging,” Energy Workforce CEO Leslie Beyer said. “We now have almost gained back all the jobs lost since March of 2020 when the pandemic began to significantly hit the labor market.
“Building back our workforce is essential to meeting growing global demand for energy. Our workforce is producing at near pre-pandemic levels, while developing new technology and deploying innovative production processes that are lowering emissions.”
Beyer said more investments and a “level regulatory landscape are needed to unlock the full power of American energy, providing energy security for our nation and that of our allies while continuing to decrease global emissions and lowering energy costs.”
The November job growth made OFS employment the highest since numbers started to drop in March 2020. Jobs are about 60,000 lower than the pre-pandemic mark in February 2020 of 706,528.
Overall, US employers added 263,000 jobs, down minimally from 284,000 in October, but still holding steady, Energy Workforce noted.
“The participation rate also took a slight dip, and the overall unemployment rate remains at 3.7%,” the trade group noted. “While the labor market remains relatively strong, it is cooling compared to the first two quarters of 2022. Additionally, most increases in hiring came in the leisure and hospitality, healthcare and government sectors.”
In a state-by-state breakdown for November, Texas had the most OFS jobs at 34,545. Louisiana was second with 53,898, while Oklahoma was third at 49,121. Colorado came in at No. 4 with 26,207. Rounding out the Top 5 was New Mexico, with 24,141.
Total employment was estimated using the BLS Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages and jobs data reported by BLS monthly. Along with more jobs, the US rig count has also increased. According to the Baker Hughes Co. data issued last Friday (Dec. 2), the domestic rig count stood at 784, up 38% year/year.