As of the end of October, 20 oil and gas producers had filed for bankruptcy in 2017, representing approximately $5.6 billion in secured and unsecured debt, according to the Haynes and Boone law firm, which released its latest energy bankruptcy report Thursday.
The firm’s report tracks North American oil and gas producers, as well as oil field service providers, that have filed for bankruptcy since the beginning of 2015. The firm has also reviewed and compiled a midstream report, which tracks companies involved in the gathering, transporting, processing, or storing of oil or natural gas.
Since the beginning of 2015, the firm has tracked 134 North American oil and gas producers that have filed for bankruptcy. The biggest share of those — 60 — were in Texas, according to a map the firm compiled to go with the analysis.
In the same time frame, 155 oil field service companies have filed bankruptcies, the firm said. Additionally, as of Oct. 31, 21 midstream companies had filed Chapter 11 bankruptcy in the U.S. since 2015.
“Bankruptcy filings by producers have slowed considerably since the surge in mid-2016,” said Ian Peck, chair of the firm’s bankruptcy and business restructuring section, said in a news release Thursday. “Service companies have continued to file bankruptcy at a steady pace since the beginning of this down cycle, due in part to the continued pricing pressure placed on the service providers. With some exceptions, we expect this trend to continue for the near future.”
Haynes and Boone is among the largest firms based in the United States and is one of the American Lawyer top 100 law firms, with more than 600 lawyers in 15 offices and 40 major legal practices.