The biggest oil producer in North Dakota has paused most of its production in the U.S. state and notified some prospects it would not provide crude after prices dipped into negative territory this week, individuals familiar with the matter stated.
Continental Resources, the corporate-controlled by billionaire Harold Hamm, halted all drilling and shut-in most of its wells in the state’s Bakken shale field, three individuals aware of production in the state stated Thursday.
U.S. crude prices dipped into negative territory this week – that means suppliers had to pay people to take oil – resulting from lack of storage space, prompting measures by operators to pause output.
Shut-ins have been swift in North Dakota, which pumped over 1.4 million barrels/day of oil last year, making it the second-biggest U.S. producing state after Texas.
State delegates say production has already dropped by about 300,000 bpd. This month, competitor operator in North Dakota Whiting Petroleum became the primary major shale producer to file for bankruptcy.
Hamm, an early supporter and informal adviser to President Trump, has advocated heavy government intervention in the oil markets in response to Saudi Arabia’s decision to flood markets with supply in March. He called for probes into unlawful dumping of crude oil by Saudi Arabia and Russia.