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Oil extraction companies like Anadarko Petroleum Corp., RSP Permian and Oasis Petroleum have collected $28 billion in more than 60 secondary stock offerings this year, outpacing every other industry group except real estate investment trusts.

The latest batch of deals, more than a dozen in the past two months, includes Rice Energy’s $1.2 billion raise and Concho Resources’ $1.4 billion raise. Anadarko has collected the highest amount this year, drawing $2.2 billion from investors in September, to help fund its acquisition of property in the Gulf of Mexico.

In fact, most of the cash drawn in the second half of the year, about $14.6 billion so far, have been tied to company efforts to snap up land, largely in the Permian Basin in West Texas, in the Scoop and Stack plays in Oklahoma and in the Appalachian region. The influx of fresh capital for mergers and acquisitions is another sign the industry plans to ratchet up drilling activity next year.

“Companies making an acquisition have to get rigs on it to make it worthwhile,” said Pearce Hammond, an analyst at Simmons & Company International in Houston, a Piper Jaffray subsidiary. “The worst thing they could do is not drill for a couple of years. Investors don’t want to hear that.”

Simmons & Co. believes U.S. oil producers could hike domestic oil field spending 37 percent next year if crude prices hover around $50 a barrel. Whether oil prices can stay afloat largely hinges on a decision by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries due at the end of the month. If Saudi Arabia and other large oil-producing nations can agree on how to curb global oil supply, shale drillers may be “off to the races” next year, Hammond said.

“If OPEC doesn’t go the right way, these guys will dial it back,” he said.

Stock-market investors seem to be betting on an oil recovery. Oil explorers have raised $43.4 billion in stock sales since the beginning of 2015, the same amount they collected through the oil boom years of 2010 through 2014. It’s also half the amount the industry raised from 1980 to 2014.

Though the public equity market has ebbed and flowed in its openness to the U.S. oil industry this year, activity has never really come to a screeching halt. Drillers pulled in less cash in July than any month this year, at $890 million, but that’s still more than the sum companies raised in October, November and December 2015 combined.