According to the American Petroleum Institute, the Oil & Gas Industry represents about 7.5% of our GDP. And just try turning on your television without hearing a story about rising gas prices, oil spills, oil shortages, drill or don't drill. It can be a bit overwhelming. Spend even a week doing business research and you'll likely be asked at least one question about the Oil & Gas Industry. Luckily, there are endless places to turn for free resources. Here are five that we've found to be fountains (wells? tanks?) of information: 1. The U.S. Energy Information Administration--Here you'll find crude oil spot prices (current & historic back to 1986), weekly gas prices by region, U.S. production of oil all the way back to 1920 and monthly imports of crude oil by country . They also publish This Week in Petroleum which comes out every Wednesday.
2. The American Petroleum Institute--The API is a trade association representing all aspects of the oil and gas industry from refiners to pipeline operators. The API collects, maintains and publishes "statistics and data on all aspects of U.S. industry operations, including supply and demand for various products, imports and exports, drilling activities and costs, and well completions."
3. Bakers Hughes--If you're looking for rig counts, Baker Hughes is the place to go. A rig count is the "number of drilling rigs actively exploring for or developing oil or natural gas". Here you can find current and historic rigs counts all the way back to 1968.
4. Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries--OPEC publishes the Monthly Oil Market Report covering things like world oil supply & demand, commodity markets, world economy, the tanker market and the oil trade. This month's report is 72 pages and it's yours for the taking. You can get free reports back to 2001. They also have annual reports back to 2001 and a recent joint report with World Bank, the OECD and the IEA.
5. Environmental Protection Agency--The EPA provides regulatory information for the petroleum sector. Here you can find laws, regulations and policies affecting the industry.