Oil Rout Could Spark OPEC Revolt Against Saudi Arabia

The crash in oil prices is fanning the flames of revolt against Saudi Arabia inside the walls of OPEC.

A war of words has broken out between OPEC kingpin Saudi Arabia and disgruntled smaller oil producers like Venezuela and Algeria. The smaller countries want the cartel to hit the brakes on production to help lift depressed oil prices — and their own struggling economies.

As the leading oil producer, the Saudis hold enormous sway over the oil cartel. Their long term bet is that by keeping oil prices low, they will squeeze American shale oil producers out of the game. That way, the Saudis can again regain market share lost to the U.S.

Just 10 years ago, Saudi Arabia was the world’s largest oil producing nation, churning out nearly twice as much crude oil as the U.S. But American output has skyrocketed in recent years thanks to the shale revolution, which has completely reshaped the global energy equation. Today the U.S. produces nearly as much as Saudi Arabia.

The onslaught of U.S. oil has sent prices spiraling from over $100 a barrel in mid-2014 to around $40 a barrel currently.

via CNN

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Alfonso Esparza

Alfonso Esparza

Senior Currency Analyst at Market Pulse
Alfonso Esparza specializes in macro forex strategies for North American and major currency pairs. Upon joining OANDA in 2007, Alfonso Esparza established the MarketPulseFX blog and he has since written extensively about central banks and global economic and political trends. Alfonso has also worked as a professional currency trader focused on North America and emerging markets. He has been published by The MarketWatch, Reuters, the Wall Street Journal and The Globe and Mail, and he also appears regularly as a guest commentator on networks including Bloomberg and BNN. He holds a finance degree from the Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education (ITESM) and an MBA with a specialization on financial engineering and marketing from the University of Toronto.
Alfonso Esparza