The amount of capital invested in oil and gas fields next year will again set a new record, with estimates of $723 billion being spent to secure hydrocarbons for worldwide consumption, according to Barclays . The four large integrated oil companies -- ExxonMobil, Chevron, BP, and Shell -- will make up about 20% of the spending. 

Increased spending on costly exploration projects are risky for oil and gas producers, but provide clear benefits to service companies. Two players to watch are offshore drillers Atwood Oceanics (NYSE:ATW) and Seadrill (NYSE:SDRL). Both of these offshore drillers have new and safe drilling fleets, commanding higher dayrates for their high-specification rigs. 

This segment is from Thursday's edition of "Digging for Value," in which sector analysts Joel South and Taylor Muckerman discuss energy and materials news with host Alison Southwick. The twice-weekly show can be viewed on Tuesdays and Thursdays. It can also be found on Twitter, along with our extended coverage of the energy and materials sectors @TMFEnergy.

Joel South has no position in any stocks mentioned. Taylor Muckerman has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Atwood Oceanics and Seadrill. The Motley Fool owns shares of Atwood Oceanics and Seadrill. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.