Drill, baby—or don't. Future may bring fewer rigs

As the price of oil continues to slide from its June highs, some big energy companies are showing signs of pulling back on capital expenditures, according to a report in

An oil-drilling rig operates on Sept. 26, 2014 near Walle, Germany.
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The online publication cited as an example Baker Hughes, whose oil rig count is at its lowest since August and could decline further in 2015. Transocean, Continental Resources and Pioneer Natural Resources are three other exploration firms that have hinted at "more modest plans for 2015" as a result of lower oil prices, said.

Brent crude was near a four-year low under $82 a barrel on Tuesday, and U.S.-traded West Texas Intermediate was just above $77.

Despite a decline in the price of crude, oil majors that bring in much of their revenue from "downstream" refining operations—ExxonMobil and Chevron, for instance—"have been insulated in the third quarter because of their large holdings in refining" so far, said.

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