A senior state economist says a new report includes some good news for the Wyoming oil and gas industries.

Jim Robinson says the ''Wyoming Insight" report for this month shows the first year-over-year increase in oil and gas employment in the state since 2015.

The report says 10,900 people were working in the Wyoming oil and gas industries in April of 2017, compared to about 10,100 a year earlier.

Robinson says rig counts for the state have also been increasing in recent weeks, with 22, 23 and 25 oil and gas rigs operating in Wyoming for the first three weeks of May compared to an average of about 19 or so over the last few months.

Applications for drilling permits are also up this year, with 2, 858 recorded in the state through the end of April, compared to 1,948 over the same period last year. Robinson says of the uptick "It's small, but it's there."

Robinson also says that while there is still an oversupply of oil on world markets,  recent OPEC production cuts are gradually whittling down the size of the oil glut. He says recent discussion of implementing production cuts through next March could mean the glut will shrink further over the next few months.

He goes on to characterize the report as "good news" for the oil and gas industries, which are key players in the overall state economy.

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