The frackers have put a ceiling on the price OPEC can get away with

Oil & Gas 360:
When it published the results of its Q2 survey of energy executives, the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas included a comment from one oil and gas exec that defines the overall effect of the shale boom on global oil prices:

“The exploration and production industry needs to get used to the paradigm that oil prices will be set for the next several years by the breakeven prices needed to drill Permian basin shale wells because there is a lot of tiger in this tank!”

It’s a telling comment. For one thing it confirms that U.S. oil right now is all about the Permian basin—with highly productive multiple stacked layers of hydrocarbons, and wells not all that deep or overly expensive to drill, it’s more economic to drill and produce the Permian than almost any other oil play.
There is much more.

One of OPEC's biggest mistakes since its founding was to try to drive the frackers out of business through predatory pricing of oil  The frackers responded by becoming more efficient and in many cases can now produce oil at a lower price than most OPEC countries.  By lowering their cost of production they have made it almost impossible for OPEC to manipulate prices upward.

One of OPEC's biggest problem is its quasi-socialist economic model where the state uses oil revenue to keep its population satisfied with authoritarian rule. It is a model that does not lend itself to increased efficiency.


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