When it comes to onshore drilling for oil and especially natural gas, directional is the new vertical.
Now that the industry is targeting shale plays like the natural gas-bearing Marcellus and the oil-bearing Bakken, players such as Devon Energy
This is a major boon for drillers like Precision Drilling Trust
No wonder, then, that W-H is the latest acquisition target in an increasingly busy M&A season. Smith International
This is now the third drilling services company to be snapped up in recent months. While I wouldn't bet on too much additional consolidation, the drillers are very well-positioned given today's oil and natural gas prices -- not to mention the upward-sloping futures curve and the recent start of hurricane season. The purest play on horizontal drilling that I know of is Helmerich & Payne