by Kelsey Tamborrino (Poltico’s Morning Energy) Does the world have enough oil to go around if 2.5 million barrels of Iranian petroleum is put behind a wall of U.S. sanctions? That’s the questions oil traders are trying to answer after the Trump administration said it would be resuming sanctions on Iran’s oil in November, … Nov. 5 — the day before the midterm elections…. The new EIA report will be here.
Does this look tight? Normally, taking Iran out of the export picture wouldn’t be a huge blow to the international oil market, analysts told ME. But former petroleum powerhouse Venezuela is imploding, Saudi Arabia seems to be producing nearly as much as it can, and international oil demand is on the rise, said Matt Badiali, senior analyst at Banyan Hill Research. President Donald Trump’s sanctions could remove slack in the oil market just as the November elections near, meaning any other supply disruptions will push oil and gasoline prices even further. “We can certainly look at gasoline prices and say, if you’re a mom and pop voter, that’s instant inflation,” Badiali said. “There’s just no way they can get around who’s to blame for rising oil prices.”
Thanks, Obama: So far, drivers seem to be shrugging off the fact that prices at the pump are already 50 cents higher than where they were a year ago. Part of the reason is that prices had been relatively low, and the economy is chugging along, said Dan McTeague, analyst at GasBuddy.com, a website that tracks fuel prices. Another reason: Fuel efficiency standards are higher than they were the last time gas prices hit the three-dollar mark, meaning drivers have to fuel up less often than they would have otherwise. (The Trump administration last week proposed freezing those standards.) “Fuel economy has picked up over the last several years,” McTeague said. “We’re buying cars that are far more fuel efficient than what we were say 10 years ago. People may be grumbling [about higher prices], but the fact is they’re absorbing it.” READ MORE