T. Boone Pickens says America’s oil industry is dying

Oil_platform_P-51_(Brazil)From the Washington Post:

Pickens is a billionaire oil investor who still travels, talks markets and tapes podcasts. He has bought and built companies, but he’s still seeing new things.

Since 1980, he recalled in an interview, he has watched oil prices plunge five times worldwide. Four of those times, he said, Saudi Arabia stepped in to cut its oil production, balance the market and bring prices up again. The fifth time — this time — the Saudis kept pumping away, prices stayed low, and American companies let their drilling grind to a near-stop. Pickens doesn’t expect them to resume anytime soon, even if prices come up a bit.

“It’ll be hard to start the United States back up,” he said.

He was more blunt over dinner. “The industry,” he said, “is dead in the water.”

Pickens took questions during a crowded meal with the Committee to Unleash Prosperity, a group founded by four devotees of supply-side economics: Arthur Laffer, Steve Forbes, Stephen Moore and Larry Kudlow. The attendees included Wall Street fund managers, conservative commentators and former federal economic officials.

They pressed Pickens on how high prices would need to rise to bring U.S. oil rigs back online en masse; he said higher than $40 or $50 a barrel – probably closer to $60.

Read more in The Washington Post.

Photo Credit: Divulgação Petrobras

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