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Monday, March 14, 2016

Is there a new meaning of "company growth"?

I'm asking you this for a reason...

About a month ago, Venezuela, Russia and Saudi Arabia had a meeting to discuss production cuts that would be undertaken by the countries in an effort to prevent any other crude from adding to the glut of oil worldwide, now estimated to be in the millions of barrels, with about 1.75 million barrels a day added to it.

Some say the excess supply exceeds three billion barrels, a not-very-small amount. It would take the world 33 days to consume it, and for the world not to produce one drop while we're doing it.

But, it was an interesting comment coming from the meeting of the minds that got me thinking the prospects to Big Oil in the future, if they follow the writing on the wall from the new group bent on halting production growth. You see, they also picked up the charge that other producing countries should do likewise and also limit production to help pick up the price.

That's a huge "ask"...

Now, if I was the chair of the board at a major oil company, I would have to be thinking about what the Saudi-Russia alliance were saying. Essentially, they were saying that, because the whole world was awash with black gold, they would have to have a hand in helping them to limit production...

They were going to have to limit the growth of the company that reports to their own share-holder.

Think about that for a minute.

In what must be an almost impossible "ask" of Big Oil, they're being asked to limit production that could affect everything from investment by shareholders, limiting their own exploration programs, refining, storage,  and most especially, take a shot at their profitability and dividends to their shareholders.

Quite a corner to be painted into now, isn't it?

"Cut production, or open the floodgates to lower oil prices".

Boy...I'd love to be a fly on the wall of the BP or Exxon-Mobil boardroom!

All the best,

George



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