Analyst warns of Saudi oil dropoff
Saudi Arabia, the world's safety valve for oil, may soon lose its ability to make up production shortfalls from other countries.
That's the warning delivered in Denver on Monday by energy analyst Matthew Simmons.
Saudi Arabia's presumed ability to bring more oil to market is often mentioned as the antidote to record high prices for oil and tight supplies.
But Simmons said prolific Saudi oil fields show signs of peaking and then gradually declining. Simmons, chief executive of Houston-based energy investment banker Simmons & Co. International, spoke to the Desk & Derrick Club of Denver, a petroleum trade association.
"They're taking the last of the easy oil out," Simmons said of Saudi oil producers. "They've had very little success in new exploration. Their sweet spots are probably very nearly depleted."