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Forecasting on a roller coaster. Without doubt, the toughest part of putting out this magazine is making the twice-yearly activity forecasts. This is especially true when the trends used to predict the future resemble those new monster roller coasters popping up at amusement parks around the world. For an example, see the graphs of international and U.S. rotary rig activity on page 16 this month.
Not surprisingly, the terrorists’ attacks on New York City and Washington D.C. of last September make the process even more difficult, since nobody could have imagined their far reaching economic effects. When the faltering economies of several countries around the world are added to the equation, the crystal ball gets even cloudier. And finally, incomplete, or even inaccurate, data tend to make the effort impossible. Nevertheless, we must persevere.
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