Shale boom slows as investor enthusiasm for Permian fades

#oilwire Oil explorers reduced rigs #drilling in U.S. oilfields this week , fueling optimism that a shale slowdown and OPEC production cuts will be enough to deflate a glut and strengthen crude prices. Shares of major shale producers , including #Pioneer #Natural #Resources Co. and EOG Resources Inc. , tumbled this week as investors began to lose confidence in the prolific #Permian basin. As the productivity of older wells in shale fields is rapidly declining , explorers added rigs at a record pace this year to keep increasing output. The Permian has seen the steepest #declines among the four largest U.S. #shale plays. #West #Texas Intermediate , the U.S. benchmark , retreated this week following the strongest rally of the year that pushed prices briefly to $50/bbl. Investors focused on the glut