Sunday, April 16, 2017

Is Saudi Aramco IPO Behind Saudi Eagerness For OPEC Cut Extension? -- -- Apirl 6, 2017

I really didn't want to post this article, another piece from (consider the source) but it allowed me to rant again.

The writer is asking whether the Aramco IPO is behind Saudi' eagerness for an OPEC cut extension? Does it matter?

Some data points from the article and earlier articles:
  • "Saudis continued their over-compliance (with the agreed-upon cuts), cutting production to 9.9 million bopd in March, around 100,000 bopd below the agreed-upon monthly quota" [comment: really? considers 100,000 bopd a "meaningful" cut? First, of all, Saudi and other OPEC producers maximized production before announcing cuts; second of all, 100,000 bopd / 10 million bopd = a 1% cut in production; and, finally, that 100,000 bopd cut is easily being made up elsewhere -- even the Bakken can match the 100,000 bopd cut without much effort]
  • OPEC producers have indicated their ideal price target is $60 [in fact, they need $100 oil, would like $80 oil but knowing that won't happen are publicly saying they can get by with $60 oil; good luck; that $60 oil is a yearly average and we are well into the fourth month of the year and Brent might be averaging $54 so far this year]
  • IEA says supply/demand re-balance will occur, but even IEA notes that as the price of oil recovers, even a bit, US production will increase
Everyone has an opinion on this. Mine is this: Saudi Arabia is in deep doo-doo.

The End Of Light Rail In Our Lifetime?

This is a pretty cool article if you accept the premise (I don't). From the Los Angeles Times, driverless cars will lead to a "garage-less economy."  If behind a paywall google: the future is in ... a parking garage? Here's one way driverless cars will change urban development: no one will own cars and therefore garages will not be needed. If you accept the premise, and again, I don't, driverless cars will also spell the end of light rail. It will simply be too expensive, and not needed. Interestingly enough , that is not discussed in the article which is not surprising. The Los Angeles Times is very much behind light rail.

Light rail? Despite a recent bailout, the Boston subway has a huge debt and is actually considering suspending weekend service.

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