Tuesday, December 06, 2016

What The OPEC Cut Signals

It's amazing to see things flip after one silly election. This is not about Trump, but he is placing feathers in his cap with these manufacturing plant relocations post-election. One can smell the anger as pundits like Dan Drezner call Carrier a Republican Solyndra, which is a joke since Carrier is part of UTC. UTC has been a Dow component for decades; Solyndra was a rent seeking scam. Forget Trump. Look at the OPEC production cuts.

Supposedly, OPEC is going to cut oil production. Non-OPEC nations have stated they will cut if OPEC cuts. OPEC actually provides a lower percentage of oil worldwide than it did decades ago. If these cuts are real and not just jawboning, then it might prove the idea that USG asked the Saudis to pump more to break Russia and indirectly hurt domestic American economic rivals.

Consider those hurt:
1. Russia - Oil is their economy and coupled with sanctions could cripple them and possibly create overthrow of current regime.
1a. Russia also would lose share of oil exports to Saudi Arabia, which is now exporting to the East.
2. US oil industry - Oil has acted like what land was in days of yore; independent money sources to fund political rivals to USG regime.
3. White proles - Not just the white proles onsite of oil extraction, but the entire chain of suppliers and the communities that service those workers. Significant red state exposure, and in purple states like Colorado and Pennsylvania, white working and middle class is hurt, not progressive clients.

That is a win for the entire progressive empire. Oil and subsequently gas gets cheaper for consumers, which helps everyone but those within that sector. It is a huge win for the regime. This is why while no one came out and said that USG asked the Saudis to pump to crush enemies, we saw multiple pundits openly discuss it on cable news and in essays. Oil was a weapon. The goal was to weaken and hurt Russia enough so that repeated color revolution attempts could be made. Trump's win means that progressive project is over. Forget buying the American stock market, might as well buy into the Russian market, even Russian bonds with high yields right now.

The election of Trump means the end of Russian sanctions. Without those, Russia gets the boot off its neck, making the oil pump wars less critical. Saudis back off, which as a 10 mil bpd producer makes the rest of OPEC step up. Even if it is just half of what Iran wanted the Saudis to cut, it is a cut. Did anyone bother to do basic math to see what Saudi Arabia "gave up" financially? At $40 per barrel and 10.5 mil bpd production, they could (very crude estimate) generate $420 mil in revenue per day. Oil pops to $50 per barrel with 10 mil bpd production, they would generate $500 mil in revenue per day. They did not give up any coin, so what's the "struggle"? Nothing financial, which is critical as the Saudis lose two wars it spent gobs of money on for years. This fight was about something else.

Oil pops, and cost per barrel is critical for the marginal drilling site. Saudis have incredibly low costs for production and large EROEI. This matters to American drillers much more. Oil is popping as the dollar rallies too, so any dollar weakness will boost the cost per barrel. Oil rig count had collapsed in the last eighteen months. Employment in that sector was down by hundreds of thousands of jobs. At this point, it might have been millions. Oil over $50 makes more shale fields economical. More fields that are profitable means more employment.

This OPEC cut is a sign that the interests behind the Left's coalition just lost. It is not even January, yet we are seeing tangible changes geopolitically.


Tiny Duck said...

People like you do not want the truth


August said...

I guess there is some benefit to having childish enemies. This action by OPEC is not in their best interests, as they will lose even more market share, and more competition will come on-line.

To top it off is the high likelihood of failure. They have been known to violate their own internal agreements.

Laguna Beach Fogey said...

How Russia Outsmarted OPEC


Anonymous said...

As an Albertan that works in the oil/gas sector this is great news for us too. Now build those F'ing pipelines already. the states has plenty of refining capacity.

Anonymous said...

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mberezowski said...

Leonard Pitts was much better when he was a music critic for the Herald. As an opinion columnist he's an amateur.