Saudi Think Tank Hints at Exit From OPEC

Saudi Arabia’s top government-funded think tank is studying the possible effects on oil markets of a breakup of OPEC, a remarkable research effort for a country that has dominated the oil cartel for nearly 60 years.

The effort coincides with new pressures on the Saudi government, including from the U.S., where President Donald Trump has accused the cartel of pushing up oil prices LCOF9, -1.85% CLZ8, -2.21% and from investors who distanced themselves from the kingdom after the brutal killing of a U.S.-based Saudi journalist.


West Texas Intermediate graph

While the think tank’s president, Adam Sieminski, said the study hadn’t been triggered by Trump’s statements, a senior adviser familiar with the project said it provided an opportunity to take into account the criticism from Washington. Depending on the findings, the study could offer a defense of the cartel and the Saudi role in it.


Brent crude graph

The research project doesn’t reflect an active debate inside the government over whether to leave the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries in the near term, according to people familiar with the matter.

via MarketWatch

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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