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This paper analyzes the normal incentives to drilling by correlating well completions in the United States with the price of crude oil, the Federal Reserve Board Index of Industrial Production, the production of crude petroleum, and crude oil discoveries. As a result of this multiple correlation, the recent abnormal rise in the drilling rate is emphasized and attributed to the entry of new factors largely related to the manner in which proration functions. A projection is then made of the drilling rate in the state of Texas to 1942 and the per-well allowable estimated both for East Texas and the rest of the state, segregated into flowing and pumping units. The estimated daily production per flowing well for Texas, exclusive of the East Texas field, is estimated to be: 193 = 51.4; 1937 = 52.1; 1938 = 40.5; 1939 = 36.2; 1940 = 33.1; 1941 = 32.7; and 1942 = 31.8. Finally it is shown how wider well spacing and other measures for retarding the drilling impetus can not only correct this decline but even reverse the trend.
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