NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Shares of Rowan Companies  (RDC) rallied in afternoon trading, up 4.64% to $21.65, after the London-based offshore driller said state-owned oil company Saudi Aramco was likely to continue employing about a third of the company's 28 contracted rigs, Reuters reports.

Rowan said it was in talks with Saudi Aramco to extend contracts for four of its drillships and was looking to win contracts for three jack-up rigs, according to Reuters.

Shares started the trading day lower after the company wrote down the value of 12 of its oldest jack-up rigs by $438.4 million in the fourth quarter, leading to a reported net loss of $326.9 million.

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Excluding the impairment charge, the company reported quarterly earnings of 89 cents per share, in line with estimates. Revenue of $556.2 million beat estimates of $529.9 million.

The stock is getting some help from rising oil prices today, with Brent up 3.52% to $62.85 at 2:50 p.m. in New York. West Texas Intermediate rose 2.57% to $49.41.

Oil is gaining as Baker Hughes (BHI) data released today showed that the number of U.S. rigs actively drilling for oil and natural gas fell 43 rigs to 1,267. The rig count is down 502 from a year ago and oil rigs fell by 33 to 986.

With oil prices down more than 50% since June, an increasing amount of rigs have been idled this year, slowing production, which could begin to ease the global supply glut that has weighed on the industry.

Separately, TheStreet Ratings team rates ROWAN COMPANIES PLC as a Hold with a ratings score of C. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:

"We rate ROWAN COMPANIES PLC (RDC) a HOLD. The primary factors that have impacted our rating are mixed,  some indicating strength, some showing weaknesses, with little evidence to justify the expectation of either a positive or negative performance for this stock relative to most other stocks. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, growth in earnings per share and increase in net income. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including disappointing return on equity, weak operating cash flow and a generally disappointing performance in the stock itself."

You can view the full analysis from the report here: RDC Ratings Report

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