The Texas Observer

State of Texas: Bottom of the Barrel

State of Texas: Bottom of the Barrel

The oil marketĀ is in a rut and Texas is starting to feel the pinch. After years of riding high, oil and gas operators in boomtowns across the state have been pulling back in response to decade-low oil prices. As companies slash production and cut jobs, towns in the Permian Basin and the Eagle Ford and Barnett shale regions are beginning to see small businesses shutter and a rise in unemployment rates, leading some to wonder if the current downturn will be similar to the 1980s oil bust.