Four Days After Predicting Oil Will Double, T. Boone Pickens Sells All Oil Holdings

Tyler Durden's picture

Just four days ago, on Monday afternoon, "legendary" oilman T Boone Pickens said that crude has hit bottom at $26 per barrel, and predicting that prices should double within 12 months.

Pickens then doubled-down on his wrong call from last year, telling CNBC's "Squawk Box" that oil prices will rise to at least $52 per barrel by the end of the year. That said, he was at least honest enough to admit that his virtually identical call from last year, when he thought prices would strongly rebound, was wrong.

Whether it's $50 or $70 by the end of 2016 will largely be determined by the global economy, he added reiterating the same flawed thesis he used to justify his bullishness a year ago: "We're still building inventories, and we will for the next several months. And then we'll start to draw," Pickens said. "Once you start to draw, you're not going to start back building again. The draw will come here in the next few months. It'll become pretty clear."

He was wrong then, and he will be wrong this time again for the simple fact that while historically OPEC exercised a rational production strategy, as of the 2014 OPEC Thanksgiving massacre, there is no more OPEC, as can be seen by the relentless attempts by roughly half the members to call an OPEC meeting unsuccessfully, confirming what we said in late 2014 - OPEC no longer exists, which means it is every oil produer for themselves.

Putting T Boone's forecasts in context, in a CNBC commentary in October, Pickens conceded his prediction for $70 oil by the end of 2015 wasn't going to happen, because worldwide demand did not go up as much as he thought and supply did not markedly go down. Oil closed the year at $37: his prediction was off by 50%.

* * *

Yet while being merely wrong is excusable, being a "legendary" hypocrite is not.

Earlier today, literally days after he predicted oil would double from its $26 "bottom", Pickens told Bloomberg that he has cashed out.

But, but, what happened to oil prices will double from their bottom? And did he just liquidate all his holdings just $4 above this so-called bottom?

Well... yes.

Pickens has sold all his oil holdings and is waiting for the best moment to get back in, he said Thursday in an interview on “Bloomberg Go.” With prices low, mid-size U.S. oil companies such as Pioneer Natural Resources Co., Anadarko Petroleum Corp. and Apache Corp. are acquisition targets for larger firms like Exxon Mobil Corp., he said.

So low, that he would be delighted if others first took advantage of these low, low, offers.

But what is most fascinating is that the broken record continues:

"The low is in,” he said. “Just don’t get in a rush here. You’re going to have plenty of opportunity. The market is going to be volatile. it’s not going to go straight up, so there will be good entry points.”

And, at least as far as Pickens is concerned, exit points.

So for anyone who listened to the CNBC and BBG commentator, and bought oil thinking he knows what he is talking about, our condolences: 

Pickens won’t start investing again until crude inventories start to fall. In the U.S., commercial stockpiles have risen in 16 of the past 19 weeks and now stand at more than 500 million barrels for the first time since 1930, at the height of the East Texas oil boom.


“I will not re-enter, I’m sure, until we start to draw on inventories,” Pickens said. “That’s a key point.”

And just like that another rider of the dumb-luck momentum trade has been exposed for the "expert" charlatain he is.

Those who wish to waste 10 minutes of their life, can watch the clip below.

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Hohum's picture

Do as I say not as I do.  The number one rule of Wall Street.

Cognitive Dissonance's picture

The trick is to get the herd to run one way so you can either sell to them expensive, buy from them cheap or just plain fade them.

knukles's picture

Well, Mr Confidence's sure shining bright today!
I'll take get outta Dodge for $100, Alex

Cognitive Dissonance's picture

And the answer is........."A sucker is born every minute."

Pinto Currency's picture



And when the currency crisis hits, he will be more than right.

Al the projections assume stable currency and miss the biggest factor.

Perhaps Boon is selling his position forward position in oil and buying bullion for when the financial markets are shut.

KesselRunin12Parsecs's picture

Well, the difference is that 'Gartman' doesn't OWN anything (not even his own idiot calls)... Gartman, instead, is just your average 'run of the mill' jew playing with other people's money (on TV)...


It's a kosher coin flip whether he or Hilsenrath is the bigger douche...

MagicHandPuppet's picture

Anyone who bought oil after this old pump and dumper announced the price will double got what was coming to them.

Hopeless for Change's picture

Pretty sure he bought all the way up to 147 in 2008.  Might be bad news for oil Bears

BuddyEffed's picture

What are the chances his comments were trying to move the price up before he sold?

Stainless Steel Rat's picture

100%, but this new statement is also a lie.  That is all these people do.

CheapBastard's picture

Every O&G engineer I knwo in Houston says oil will hit $20-$22 before it rebounds. None could give me a timing of the price changes. They all cite a nuber of reasons including demand, supply, wars, etc.The sadder news is most of them are now unemployed due to Barry's robust recovery. Even sadder is most of them voted for him!

Money Counterfeiter's picture

Smart old dude cashed out. WTF does that tell you.

. . . _ _ _ . . .'s picture

"Smart old dude cashed out. WTF does that tell you."

Saudi and Iran WON'T go to war??

zippedydoodah's picture

He made $4 per barrel in four days!! The guy is a bloody genius, like it or not.

old naughty's picture

chicken... don't like it. sh't.

Arnold's picture

Pump and dump.

He' s still got the old stuff.

I'll bet he bought it all alot higher.

Government needs you to pay taxes's picture

The Goldman BalSach does this every week.  Get the sellside analyst to squawk 'Buy, Buy, Buy' on some piece of shit stock, and then use those muppets buy orders to sell size.  

Did you think he said Buy?  He was sayin' Bye bye bye!

AldousHuxley's picture

Pickens comes to bloomberg to sell of his position after he realizes his mistake. He wants YOU to take the other side of the trade.

Bill Gross comes to CNBC to scare equity longs into his bonds after he realizes Fed/JCB/ECB readies more stimulous and he needs to unload. He wants YOU to take the other side of the trade.


Warren  Buffett does interviews to bring investors into US equities after he has made his long bets. When all else fails, call Obama to have Fed increase the balance sheet or broker private deals of public companies (ie. Goldman Sachs bailout by government)

Remember, they are salesman. Wall street favors sellers for larger comissions. They sell to suckers.



Nutsack's picture

How on earth wasn't Pickens born jewish?

fx's picture

So the "expert" Pickens rode his oilholdings all the way down while oil was collapsing 70% but expert as he is , he leaves the -perhaps- still remaing 20 % (from the original $100/bl oil) to the "amateur suckers".

While I understand his logic, I don't quite understand what took him so long. But probably, that's because he is the famed oil-"expert" while I am just an ordinary human being.

cornflakesdisease's picture

A democratic engineer in Houston?

You don't know Texans very well.

jaxville's picture

  I have several clients in the business and more than one of them told me a few years back this was going to happen though back then I did not believe it.  Those same guys now say there will be no recovery in oil prices until it gets below $30 (preferably mid $20s) and stays there for three or four months.  Marginal producers need to be taken off line so that the supply glut can be worked through.  Within eighteen months or so prices would start to normalize.

  Everyone here knows what will happen to the fracking industry and the shale/heavy oil plays at that price level.  We also have a pretty good idea of the damage to the financial sector and the economy at large should that happen.

  In order to maintain the facade of stability the financial sector and the gov'ts they own are doing all they can to keep prices higher than they should be.  Consequently this can go on for a lot longer than it otherwise would.  I think Pickens recently sat down with someone in the business who knows this reality. 



mtl4's picture

The problem here is that everyone (Pickens included) is simply looking at this as a supply/demand problem, but the real gorilla is that foreign gvernments have created huge budget problems for themselves by overpromising when oil was high and now they are stuck making good as oil drops below 1/3 of what they expected.  The stupidity of government can't be understated so expect them to keep putting crazy amounts of oil into the market until their debt load breaks the camel's back so to speak.  The only wildcard now will be war (why you see Saudi's suddenly wanting to get into it with Syria/Russia)

Tarzan's picture

"The problem here is that everyone (Pickens included) is simply looking at this as a supply/demand problem"


Boone Pickens: Why I’m standing by $70 oil by year end
Michelle Fox    | @MFoxCNBC
Thursday, 9 Jul 2015 | 4:05 PM

Despite the recent volatility in crude, energy entrepreneur Boone Pickens is sticking to his prediction that oil will hit $70 a barrel by the end of the year.

In an interview with CNBC's "Power Lunch," Pickens said that he expects demand to grow while U.S. production slows down.

"If I miss on $70 it'll be because it's over $70, not under $70. That's how confident I am," the founder of BP Capital said. "I think demand will be over 2 million barrels a day."

Pickens would like us to think the price is simply a factor of supply and demand.  I'm sure he would say the same for Silver and Gold.  But price is "discovered" by more then a free market, the price is at least partly dictated by what's needed to float the system, to what the Oligarch NEEDS.  This has created the glut of oil, Years of over priced oil. Couple that with declining demand and the needs of the system become it's undoing.

The scam is being exposed.  If prices stay this low for too long, the producers who survive by cutting costs and succeed in making a profit at these low prices will expose the scam of 100 dollar oil and it's unreasonable profiteering.

Here is what Lindbergh had to say in the 1923, ten years after the creation of the Federal Reserve and six years before the start of the great depression.

"The "reasonable profit" on vested capital, as it is called, is what seals the downfall of every nation..."

"...The rule of "reasonable profit" is mainly responsible for the havoc played with our own economic system, yet the rule goes almost uncontested, scarcely protested.  Protests are made against the effect and not against the cause.
    Already profit has mounted until approximately four-fifths of all the wealth that God created in our country-plus a like proportion of what the toil of men and women have added-is now owned by the few who never earned it, that is, the profiteers.  What the few over-rich own or control was adroitly secured by exploiting the masses and defrauding the Government.  Most of that wealth is needed to serve mankind. it is the need of all the people of what the few control that permits the owners to exploit the users....."

The cost of production and labor has steadily declined over the last couple decades, yet they still "need" $100+ oil to sustain the system, to prevent the DOW from crashing?

Alaska governor, "Unless oil hits $110, we need a tax hike"

This system that depends on FUCKING the consumer with inflated prices to service the enormous flow of illicit fiat into the secret budgets of our slave masters has run it's coarse.  The idea that The People owe these crooks $19 trillion plus interest is insane, and that they also need huge secret slush funds in addition is incredible.  It's unsustainable and Chaos will soon overtake TPTB. 

Their only play, a losing play for the western Oligarchs, is MOAR WAR!

fiatmasochist's picture

Breath of fresh air. Will look forward to future commentary from you. You have a great mind.

Lugnut's picture

Seriously. You'd think the Tylers never heard of the phrase "talking your book". Every time these guys come on CNBC its to help position their next trade.

No one is just a 'commentator' without a doscislosure that they have no relevant holdings. Dummy up.

Theosebes Goodfellow's picture

Frankly Scarlett, I couldn't give a shit what ol' T. Boone is selling. The question that interests me is, "what is T. Boone buying?"

Hearing about Mr. Pickens's sells is like reading yesterday's racing forum, interesting, but not particularly relevant.

mkkby's picture

Look, folks -- this aint' that fuckin hard.  Low oil prices has NOTHING to do with supply/demand and NOTHING to do with oil country budgets.

The saudis are pumping out a glut because DC wants economic sanctions vs. russia.  As a side bonus they want to put frackers and oil sands out of business.  Jessus fucking christ, this has been written on ZH about a dozen times.

When russia either goes broke or capitulates, the saudis will suddenly remember how supply and demand works, and oil will go back up.  That is when you invest in the oil patch -- when russia craters.

Ham-bone's picture

The Federal Reserve and central banks have purported they can perpetually create greater and cheaper debt to maintain accelerating consumption and infinite growth despite decelerating population and wage growth.  The breakdown of population growth and a review of its changing components is all you really need to see in order to understand how wrong the Fed is.

MrBoompi's picture

Well they create all this money for themselves that they think the world owes them and hope they die before anyone figures out the scam.....

nscholten's picture

That graph tells it all.  Another reason why immigrantion has been on the rise and now we are bombing them out of there own country to implement them into the (debt is currancy) game.  And of course to also place them in areas with a libertarian presence. 

Apply Force's picture

Nice charts Ham-bone.  Decelerating population and wage growth leads to less demand for energy products as well, and as energy acquisition costs rise (no more low hanging fruit), this creates a perfect feedback loop into a future world of LESS.  Much less.

khnum's picture

No actually he might be a lot smarter something has caused the Fed to spend $20 billion of cash reserves in the last month,money they couldn't make out of thin air also by the look of the FRED charts a lot of banking money is vapourising,this might be to prop up oil prices....your not being told but theres a fucking big rat out there somewhere at the moment

armageddon addahere's picture

He might be. If he was smart he would have sold when oil was $100 not when it was $26. This isn't the bottom but it is closer than it was last year.

AssN9's picture

Slim Pickens is his brother

Omen IV's picture

so he sells out and the Saudi's are exploring IPO of Aramco

sounds like liquidity is now the premier asset - maybe bullion but assets that you have to take care of are a drain

Real Estate Residential is going to be a bloodbath -

Escrava Isaura's picture



The interesting question to ask is: “Why is Pickens talking from both sides of the mouth?”


In my view, because he doesn’t understand the coming paradigm because he can’t. He can’t accept. He can’t believe. It can’t be true.

Mr. Pickens, at the coming paradigm, financialization/gambling, and everyone that are counting on it, these will be the ones to lose the most.

Clark_Griswold Hedge Mnger's picture

He's talking out of both sides, but it ain't just his mouth talkin

edifice's picture

Actually, 255 are born every minute.

MayIMommaDogFace2theBananaPatch's picture


And the answer is........."A sucker is born every minute."

ALEX TRIBEC: I am sorry Cognitive Dissonance, but you forgot to phrase your response in the form of a question.

NoDebt's picture

He's been a known scumbag for a long time.  Doesn't surprise me at all he would talk his own book immediately before selling.