Friday, April 05, 2019

Saudi Arabia has threatened the United States to stop using dollars for its oil trades in an attempt to discourage legislators from passing a bill dubbed NOPEC aimed at holding OPEC liable for cartel practices under U.S. law.

The reported threat takes OPEC’s—Saudi Arabia’s—offensive against the No Oil Producing and Exporting Cartels Act a step further after last month UAE oil minister, Suhail al-Mazrouei, reportedly told lenders at the meeting that if the bill was made into law that made OPEC members liable to U.S. anti-cartel legislation, the group, which is to all intents and purposes indeed a cartel, would break up and every member would boost production to its maximum.

This would be a repeat of what happened in 2013 and 2014, and ultimately led to another oil price crash like the one that saw Brent crude and WTI sink below US$30 a barrel. As a result, a lot of U.S. shale-focused, debt-dependent producers would go under.

Energy-sector earnings in 2019 are now expected to be down by 11% compared with 2018, based on a 1.5% decline in revenues and a 0.6 percentage-point fall in margins, according to JPMorgan.

Given the sharp rebound in oil, those forecasts may be too grim, the firm’s analysts write. Revenue and margins should start to increase again if oil averages $65 a barrel this year, and earnings would rise by 20% if the price recovers to $70, they say.

Oil is at $62 a barrel, currently.

yeah, do it. Gas was 1.35 a gallon. Go ahead, make my day.

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