Oil prices could jump as much as $10 per barrel after 10 drone strikes hit the oil producing center of the world in Saudi Arabia.
The drones attacked an oil processing facility at Abqaiq and the nearby Khurais oil field on Saturday. The drone attack has forced five million barrels of crude production a day to go offline which amounts to about 5% of the world’s daily oil production. The impact of the attack on oil prices could be as much as $10 a barrel.
It’s not a coincidence that the attack occurred as Saudi Arabia was moving to publicly list Aramco on stock exchanges around the world. This will no doubt delay the public listing of Aramco stock which will be the largest IPO in history when it eventually does take place.
Folks, this is a big deal and is going to hit consumers hard. When the oil market opens on Sunday evening, it will open up $5 to $10 per barrel higher. This will raise the price per gallon for gasoline by about 20 cents.
The price impact will depend on the repair time which can take weeks to months.
“Our baseline assumptions, which incorporate public assessments of strategic petroleum reserve capacity and OPEC spare capacity, imply a net shortfall of ~1 MM bbl/d, or at least a ~$6/bbl premium to the ~$60 Brent close,” Book said in a note. “Exclusive of this supply offset, and assuming a three-week shutdown, our models imply ~$10/bbl of upside.”
U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures settled 0.4% lower at $54.85 on Friday, and Brent crude futures traded 0.2% lower at $60.25 per barrel.
Yemen’s Houthi rebels have claimed responsibility for the attack, one of their largest attacks ever on Saudi Arabia. The Houthis have been behind a series of attacks on Saudi pipelines, tankers and other infrastructure in the past few years as Saudi Arabia has repeatedly bombed and killed innocent women and children inside Yemen. The Saudi Arabia attacks against the civilian population in Yemen, using U.S. weapons, has largely gone unreported in the corporate mainstream media inside the U.S.
Saudi Arabia, Israel, and the U.S. will use the incident to blame Iran for the attack as they push for an escalation and retaliation against the country. This could ultimately send oil prices higher by $10 or more.