How Broke Is The House Of Saud?

Authored by Raul Ilargi Meijer via The Automatic Earth blog,

Trying to figure out what on earth is happening in the Middle East appears to have gotten a lot harder. Perhaps (because) it’s become more dangerous too. There are so many players, and connections between players, involved now that even making one of those schematic representations would never get it right. Too many unknown unknowns.

A short and incomplete list of the actors: Sunni, Shiite, Saudi Arabia, US, Russia, Turkey, ISIS, Syria, Iran, Iraq, Libya, Kurds, Lebanon, Hezbollah, Hamas, Qatar, Israel, United Arab Emirates (UAE), Houthis, perhaps even Chechnya, Afghanistan, Pakistan. I know I know, add your favorites.

So what have we got, or what do we know we’ve got?

We seem to have the US lining up with Israel, the UAE and Saudi Arabia against Russia, Iran, Syria, Hezbollah. Broadly. But that’s just a -pun intended- crude start.

Putin has been getting closer to the Saudis because of the OPEC production cuts, trying to jack up the price of oil. Which ironically has now been achieved on the heels of the arrests of 11 princes and scores of other wealthy and powerful in the kingdom. But Putin also recently signed a $30 billion oil -infrastructure- deal with Iran. And he’s been cuddling up to Israel as well.

In fact, Putin may well be the most powerful force in the Middle East today. Well played?! He prevented the demise of Assad in Syria, which however you look at it at least saved the country from becoming another Iraq and Libya style failed state. If there’s one thing you can say about the Middle East/North Africa it’s that the US succeeded in creating chaos there to such an extent that it has zero control left over any of it. Well played?!

One thing seems obvious: the House of Saud needs money.

The cash flowing out to the princes is simply not available anymore. The oil price is a major factor in that. Miraculously, the weekend crackdown on dozens of princes et al, managed to do what all the OPEC meetings could not for the price of oil: push it up. But the shrinkage of foreign reserves shows a long term problem, not some momentary blip:

Another sign that money has become a real problem in Riyadh is the ever-postponed IPO of Saudi Aramco, the flagship oil company supposedly worth $2 trillion. Trump this week called on the Saudi’s to list it in New York, but despite the upsurge in oil prices you still have to wonder which part of that $2 trillion is real, and which is just fantasy.

But yeah, I know, there’s a million different stocks you can ask the same question about. Then again, seeing the wealth of some of the kingdom’s richest parties confiscated overnight can’t be a buy buy buy signal, can it? Looks like the IPO delay tells us something.

And then you have the 15,000 princes and princesses who all live off of the Kingdom’s supposed riches (‘only 2,000’ profit directly). All of them live in -relative- wealth. Some more than others, but there’s no hunger in the royal family. Thing is, overall population growth outdoes even that in the royal family. Which means, since the country produces nothing except for oil, that there are 1000s upon 1000s of young people with nothing to do but spend money that’s no longer there. Cue mayhem.

And things are not getting better, Saudi Arabia loses money on every barrel it produces. There are stories about them lowering their break-even price, but let’s take that with a few spoonfuls of salt. A 25% drop in break-even prices in just one year sounds a bit too good. Moreover, main competitors like Iran would still have a much lower break-even price. So even if prices would rise further, the Saudi’s might only break even while Iran gets much richer. Running vs standing still.

Saudi Arabia Leads Gulf Nations in Cutting Break-Even Oil Price

Saudi Arabia, OPEC’s biggest oil producer, is also a leader when it comes to slashing the crude price the country needs to balance its budget. The kingdom will need oil to trade at $70 a barrel next year to break even, the IMF said Tuesday in its Regional Economic Outlook for the Middle East and Central Asia. That’s down from a break-even of $96.60 a barrel in 2016, the biggest drop of eight crude producers in the Persian Gulf. The break-even is a measure of the crude price needed to meet spending plans and balance the budget.

Gulf oil producers are cutting spending and eliminating subsidies after crude plunged from more than $100 a barrel in 2014 to average just over half that this year. The need to curb spending is more urgent with the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries cutting output to reduce a global glut. Oil will trade at $50 to $60 a barrel for the “medium term,” the IMF said.

So a thorough cleansing job of the royal family is perhaps inevitable, albeit very risky. King Salman and crown prince Mohammed bin Salman are up against a very large group of rich people. But there’s no way back now.

Saudi Banks Freeze More Than 1,200 Bank Accounts in Anti-Corruption Purge

Saudi Arabian banks have frozen more than 1,200 accounts belonging to individuals and companies in the kingdom as part of the government’s anti-corruption purge, bankers and lawyers said on Tuesday. They added that the number is continuing to rise. Dozens of royal family members, officials and business executives have been detained in the crackdown and are facing allegations of money laundering, bribery, extorting officials and taking advantage of public office for personal gain. Since Sunday, the central bank has been expanding the list of accounts it is requiring lenders to freeze on an almost hourly basis…

Much more will have to follow that. Doing a half way job is far too risky once the job has started. Not even $800 billion sounds like all that much. Separate families and factions within the royal family have had decades to accumulate wealth.

Saudi Crackdown Targets Up to $800 Billion in Assets

The Saudi government is aiming to confiscate cash and other assets worth as much as $800 billion in its broadening crackdown on alleged corruption among the kingdom’s elite, according to people familiar with the matter. Several prominent businessmen are among those who have been arrested in the days since Saudi authorities launched the crackdown on Saturday, by detaining more than 60 princes, officials and other prominent Saudis, according to those people and others. The country’s central bank, the Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority, said late Tuesday that it has frozen the bank accounts of “persons of interest” and said the move is “in response to the Attorney General’s request pending the legal cases against them.”

The most visible – and perhaps richest- of all those arrested -in western eyes- is Al-Waleed. The Bloomberg estimate of his wealth that came out this week is $19 billion. But their own article seems to indicate a much higher number. He owns 5% of Apple -says Bloomberg-, and that share alone would be worth $45 billion.

Alwaleed, Caught in Saudi Purge, Has Assets Across the World

Apple – Alwaleed bought 6.23 million shares, or 5 percent, of the computer and mobile-device maker for $115.4 million in 1997. He made these purchases between mid-March and April of that year while the company was still struggling to turn itself around. He has since continued to hold the stake while Apple’s valuation has soared to as high as $900 billion.

Going through all these numbers, you can imagine why the ruling family, or rather the rulers within that family, are getting nervous. And that’s where we get to an interesting piece by Ryan Grim at the Intercept, who says it’s not even 32-year-old crown prince Mohammed bin Salman, known as MBS, or King Salman, 81, who control the kingdom these days, it’s the United Arab Emirates (UAE) -and maybe Washington-.

The coup has already been perpetrated.

Saudi Arabia’s Government Purge – And How Washington Corruption Enabled It

The move marks a moment of reckoning for Washington’s foreign policy establishment, which struck a bargain of sorts with Mohammed bin Salman, known as MBS, and Yousef Al Otaiba, the United Arab Emirates ambassador to the U.S. who has been MBS’s leading advocate in Washington. The unspoken arrangement was clear: The UAE and Saudi Arabia would pump millions into Washington’s political ecosystem while mouthing a belief in “reform,” and Washington would pretend to believe that they meant it.


MBS has won praise for some policies, like an openness to reconsidering Saudi Arabia’s ban on women drivers. Meanwhile, however, the 32-year-old MBS has been pursuing a dangerously impulsive and aggressive regional policy, which has included a heightening of tensions with Iran, a catastrophic war on Yemen, and a blockade of ostensible ally Qatar. Those regional policies have been disasters for the millions who have suffered the consequences, including the starving people of Yemen, as well as for Saudi Arabia, but MBS has dug in harder and harder. And his supporters in Washington have not blinked.


The platitudes about reform were also challenged by recent mass arrests of religious figures and repression of anything that has remotely approached less than full support of MBS. The latest purge comes just days after White House adviser Jared Kushner, a close ally of Otaiba, visited Riyadh, and just hours after a bizarre-even-for-Trump tweet. Whatever legitimate debate there was about MBS ended Saturday — his drive to consolidate power is now too obvious to ignore. And that puts denizens of Washington’s think tank world in a difficult spot, as they have come to rely heavily on the Saudi and UAE end of the bargain.


As The Intercept reported earlier, one think tank alone, the Middle East Institute, got a massive $20 million commitment from the UAE. And make no mistake, MBS is a project of the UAE — an odd turn of events given the relative sizes of the two countries. “Our relationship with them is based on strategic depth, shared interests, and most importantly the hope that we could influence them. Not the other way around,” Otaiba has said privately.

The kingdom’s broke. Not today, or tomorrow morning, but crown prince MBS is able to look at the numbers and go: Oh Shit! And if he doesn’t see it, he has Kushner (re: Israel) and Al-Otaiba to fill him in. All three relative youngsters -MBS is 32, Kushner is 36, Otaiba is 43- are exceedingly nervous by now.

And then you get war, or the threat of war. War in Yemen, a blockade of Qatar, and now ‘mingling’ in Lebanon with the somewhat mysterious removal of billionaire PM Hariri -allegedly on an Iran/Hezbollah assassination plot-, and outright threats against Iran and Hezbollah:

Lebanon’s Hariri Visits UAE As Home Crisis Escalates

Lebanon’s outgoing prime minister, Saad al-Hariri, made a brief visit to the United Arab Emirates from Saudi Arabia on Tuesday despite a deepening crisis back home and a rise in regional tensions triggered by his surprise resignation. Hariri announced his resignation on Saturday during a visit to his ally Saudi Arabia and has not yet returned to Lebanon. He said he believed there was an assassination plot against him and accused Iran, Saudi Arabia’s arch-rival, and its Lebanese ally Hezbollah of sowing strife in the Arab world.


His resignation has thrust Lebanon back into the frontline of the regional rivalry that pits a mostly Sunni bloc led by Saudi Arabia and allied Gulf monarchies against Shi‘ite Iran and its allies. Hariri’s office said he had flown to Abu Dhabi on Tuesday and then returned to Riyadh, but it gave no reason for the trip. It also did not say when he would return home. Hariri’s Future TV channel said he would also visit Bahrain but gave no reason.

In short: billionaire PM Hariri is a puppet. Just perhaps not of Saudi Arabia, but of Abu Dhabi. Whether he’s under house arrest in Riyadh, as has been suggested, is still unclear. But it’s a safe bet that he didn’t fly to Abu Dhabi -and back- alone, or of his own accord. He went to receive instructions.

Saudi Arabia Accuses Iran Of ‘Direct Military Aggression’ Over Yemen Missile

Saudi Arabia’s crown prince has accused Iran of “direct military aggression” by supplying missiles to Houthi rebels in Yemen, raising the stakes in an already tense standoff between the two regional rivals. Mohammed bin Salman linked Tehran to the launch of a ballistic missile fired from Yemen towards the international airport in the Saudi capital of Riyadh on Saturday. The missile was intercepted and destroyed.


“The involvement of the Iranian regime in supplying its Houthi militias with missiles is considered a direct military aggression by the Iranian regime,” the prince said on Tuesday during a phone conversation with the UK foreign secretary, Boris Johnson, according to the state-run Saudi Press Agency. He added that the move “may be considered an act of war against the kingdom”. Iran has called Riyadh’s accusations as baseless and provocative.

We have no way of knowing what is true or not about this. We do know that Saudi Arabia have been executing a barbaric war in Yemen. With weapons from the US, UK, et al. So someone firing back wouldn’t be that far-fetched.

Regardless, Pepe Escobar, a journalist who knows much more than his peers, or at least doesn’t hold back as much as them, doesn’t see this end well for MBS, UAE, Israel, US, and whoever else is in their corner. Another losing war for the US in the Middle East? We’re losing count.

The Inside Story Of The Saudi Night Of Long Knives

A top Middle East business/investment source who has been doing deals for decades with the opaque House of Saud offers much-needed perspective: “This is more serious than it appears. The arrest of the two sons of previous King Abdullah, Princes Miteb and Turki, was a fatal mistake. This now endangers the King himself. It was only the regard for the King that protected MBS. There are many left in the army against MBS and they are enraged at the arrest of their commanders.” To say the Saudi Arabian Army is in uproar is an understatement. “He’d have to arrest the whole army before he could feel secure.”


[..] The story starts with secret deliberations in 2014 about a possible “removal” of then King Abdullah. But “the dissolution of the royal family would lead to the breaking apart of tribal loyalties and the country splitting into three parts. It would be more difficult to secure the oil, and the broken institutions whatever they were should be maintained to avoid chaos.” Instead, a decision was reached to get rid of Prince Bandar bin Sultan – then actively coddling Salafi-jihadis in Syria – and replace the control of the security apparatus with Mohammed bin Nayef. The succession of Abdullah proceeded smoothly.


Power was shared between three main clans: King Salman (and his beloved son Prince Mohammed); the son of Prince Nayef (the other Prince Mohammed), and finally the son of the dead king (Prince Miteb, commander of the National Guard). In practice, Salman let MBS run the show. And, in practice, blunders also followed. The House of Saud lost its lethal regime-change drive in Syria and is bogged down in an unwinnable war on Yemen, which on top of it prevents MBS from exploiting the Empty Quarter – the desert straddling both nations. The Saudi Treasury was forced to borrow on the international markets. Austerity ruled …


[..] aversion to MBS never ceased to grow; “There are three major royal family groups aligning against the present rulers: the family of former King Abdullah, the family of former King Fahd, and the family of former Crown Prince Nayef.” Nayef – who replaced Bandar – is close to Washington and extremely popular in Langley due to his counter-terrorism activities. His arrest earlier this year angered the CIA and quite a few factions of the House of Saud – as it was interpreted as MBS forcing his hand in the power struggle. According to the source, “he might have gotten away with the arrest of CIA favorite Mohammed bin Nayef if he smoothed it over but MBS has now crossed the Rubicon though he is no Caesar. The CIA regards him as totally worthless.”


[..] The source, though, is adamant; “There will be regime change in the near future, and the only reason that it has not happened already is because the old King is liked among his family. It is possible that there may be a struggle emanating from the military as during the days of King Farouk, and we may have a ruler arise that is not friendly to the United States.”

In the end, it all comes down to a familiar theme: follow the money. And we need to seriously question the economic reality of Saudi Arabia. That graph above of their foreign reserves looks downright grim.

With money comes power. Who loses money loses power. Saudi Arabia is bleeding money. The population surge is uncanny, and there are no jobs for all these young people. Perhaps the best they can do is be a US/Israel puppet in an attempt to ‘redo’ the map of the Middle East, but that has not been a very successful project off late -like the past 100 years-.

Then again, when you’re desperate you do desperate things. And when you’re a 32-year-old crown prince with more enemies than you can keep track of, you use what money is left to 1) keep up appearances, 2) steal what others have gathered, 3) buy weapons up the wazoo, and 4) go to war.

It all paints a very dark picture for the world.

Russia won’t stand for attacks on Iran. And Iran won’t let attacks on Lebanon/Hezbollah go unanswered. All that is set to push up oil prices further, and all parties involved are just fine with that. Because they can buy more weapons with the additional profits.

I’ll leave you with Nassim Taleb’s comments on the situation. After all, Nassim’s from Lebanon, and knows that part of the world like the back of his hand:


4shzl 4shzl Wed, 11/08/2017 - 22:03 Permalink

I've spent enough time in the sandbox to tell you this with authority: the Clintons' solicitation of Saudi money would have seemed like an irresistible opportunity to the sleazeballs in KSA.  After all, her election victory was a sure thing, right?  What could possibly go wrong with an investment that bought influence with the future occupant of the Oval Office?  Now, as the rats begin to squeal, the Crown Prince will hand Trump the gift of his dreams.

In reply to by 4shzl

RAT005 TBT or not TBT Thu, 11/09/2017 - 01:53 Permalink

Along the lines of this is USA sanctioned and then down a little tangent, there are intriguing stories that this is related to rounding up Clinton et al bribe criminals, pedophiles, and sex trafficing amoung other things.  Something like Trump says: arrest all of this circle, you can keep their money, we just want this branch of Clinton corruption shut down.If he wins, we all hang :-)

In reply to by TBT or not TBT

fleur de lis peopledontwanttruth Thu, 11/09/2017 - 09:34 Permalink

Nope.The central bankers and all their concubines have wormed into every level of banking, industry, general commerce, .gov, academia, the arts, etc., everything.They have had centuries to infest all crevices of society, where they quietly feed on healthy growth and give nothing but decay in return.This is why nothing is making any sense -- behind the scenes we are governed by vermin.They are a societal disease unto themselves, and they sicken all natural growth.They will have to be carefully fleshed out in bits and that will take a long time if ever.Taking them all down at once will take down and destroy too many ordinary people and families just trying to get by.  

In reply to by peopledontwanttruth

VWAndy Wed, 11/08/2017 - 21:54 Permalink

 They are the ones that dropped oil prices blowing up a buncha other countries. Taking the whole lots of oil producers into the red.

Ms No VWAndy Wed, 11/08/2017 - 22:18 Permalink

I think that order came down from the top, Zionist Globalist head cheese.  The House of Sodomy has actually paid more dearly for most of the operations of the real coalition of evil then all the rest, which explains a lot about their current condition.  They also used their citizens as the supposed pilots for Sept 11 even though many of those guys have already been proven to still be alive and some even active pilots for SA airlines.  They are setup forward and back.  They may have resisted this for a time finding it unfair but then a law was passed allowed them to be sued for Sept 11 and maybe that got them back into line.

In reply to by VWAndy

east of eden Ms No Wed, 11/08/2017 - 22:30 Permalink

9/11, the biggest hoax ever pulled on the American people, and by their own, plus of course, you know who.There may very well never have been any planes at all. It may have been an internal explosion made to look like and impact. Many also say there was no plane that ever hit the pentagon, and if you think about it, how in the world would the defense systems around the pentagon not have brought an airliner down. There must be at least that much protection on the place.What are the implications? Well, at a minimum, there are dozens, if not hundreds of traitors that need to be exposed and dealt with. It truly is a struggle for the soul of the country.

In reply to by Ms No

gregga777 east of eden Thu, 11/09/2017 - 00:29 Permalink

The Pentagon was hit by either a cruise missile or maybe a QF-4 drone on 9/11. There is no way that any pilot could have flown a 757 into the Pentagon. Ground effect would have prevented it getting low enough to fly into the Pentagon at the supposed impact speed. Also, though the engine cores and main landing gear beams and struts are ALWAYS recoverable following a crash there was no evidence of their existence at the crash site. Plus, at that supposed impact velocity, though the 757 wing spars would have cut through the Pentagon structure like a hot knife through butter there was no sign that that happened. It was simply impossible for a large commercial jet passenger aircraft to have struck the Pentagon on 9/11.

In reply to by east of eden

Ms No gregga777 Thu, 11/09/2017 - 02:09 Permalink

The Pentagon and Pennsylvania were definitely not planes.  I collapsed on the idea that the towers were probably hit by remote control planes and explosives in the building.  Who knows if there were people in those planes or not.  I always wondered if passengers really did die, if they were sealed in there or dropped off and killed somewhere else.  They very likely, and probably most likely, could have been empty also.  I didn't look into the minute details of the planes into the twin towers but it would be beyond risky to try to bluff the two planes hitting with the world watching and all of NY staring at it.  One thing we can all agree on is that overall it was utter bullshit.Remember how it was staged to where Rummy came out like a big hero trying to treat everybody and that was used as a partial excuse to why there was no coherent response to an hour long terror op?  He conveniently on the exact other side of the building from where it was struck.  ROFL  Rumsfeld should have his balls chopped off.  Unlike Hillary at least he knew to shut the hell up and go away.  Then we had the US weapons grade anthrax attacks, they false flagged somebody for that and suicide him, the DC freeway shooter and the shit just kept rolling on.  Now everybody thinks it's normal background violence. 

In reply to by gregga777

fleur de lis PrivetHedge Thu, 11/09/2017 - 09:16 Permalink

There is also the possibility of holograms.Holograms were already advanced by the 80's, maybe even sooner.If you look at the "plane" that hit the tower in slow motion, you will see that the the wings were inside the building before any explosion or even exterior destruction.If a real plane hit the building there would have been massive destruction upon initial impact.Furthermore, debris from the plane would have been scattered in all directions.Those buildings were pulverized to ash and dust and there is only one weapon that can do that with such speed and ferocity.So our "leaders" did indeed create and pull off a mass murder spree, the question is how and with whom.Knowing some of the players involved is not enough because it omits too many.At some future point a criminal chart will display the various schemes that worked together to fool us all and instigate a massive warmongering expedition.Once the primary instigators are identified, their families and all generational spawn should be stripped of assets down to the last penny and reduced to street level poverty.   

In reply to by PrivetHedge

Sokhmate east of eden Thu, 11/09/2017 - 01:07 Permalink

There may very well never have been any planes at all

 To support this point, each video showing a plane of sorts, hitting the towers, shows a different plane (size, dimensions), inconsistent lighting. The theory is the alleged planes in those videos were crude video tricks/animation. Years ago many YT videos dissected all those vids. Some might still be up.

In reply to by east of eden

Ms No Wed, 11/08/2017 - 22:10 Permalink

800 billion is definitely enough motive for a mass murder and coup. Imagine that, crimes that actually have motives? Huh, that's weird. They will do this to everybody.  Allegiance to Globalist Zionism and it's never ending nation destroying wars becomes very expensive.  You are their piggybank too.  It is somewhat humorous that psychos always turn on those that have been allied with them prior, every time.  So everybody who has been in league with them better take a good look at what they have been doing to their prior friends.  Saddam, Osama and Gaddafi reveal that quite clearly.No matter how you look at this, Saudi is in trouble.  This one act alone could bring their downfall.  They better start throwing big scraps off the table quick and that is not guaranteed to save them from every moneyed interest in SA that now has their hackles up.  Now they have no friends but Israel and the Globalists.  Their tortured people don't like them and neither does the money.  

east of eden Wed, 11/08/2017 - 22:22 Permalink

IF it also includes the downfall of the whabbist priests, then bring it on. Once the Whabbists are gone, the only group left causing problems will be bebe's crew religious vipers.

Mena Arkansas Wed, 11/08/2017 - 23:04 Permalink

I wonder if Mohammed bin Salman has signed a deal with the jews to cede the northern half of SA since it is part of the Greater Israel plan.… of a Balfour Declaration II. jews promise to con their US golem into fighting Iran to protect SA in exchange for half their country.The US gets to spill more goy blood and pay for it. Just like WWI.

Golden Showers Ms No Thu, 11/09/2017 - 03:49 Permalink

If they have the whole thing now, how long have they had it?Seems to be a trend with Suni Muslim Nations getting knocked off in wars of convienience.I don't think it's about peak oil. Just look where Saudi Arabia is.Someone's after the bloodline of weak inbred S.A. Fucks who are useless eaters for starters. This is a fire sale. Egypt is in some serious shit. Iran is going to back door full on double down. The wild card of hope for me is that Russia, China, and Iran will one day fucking destroy Israel. Personally I only trust Russia and Iran.My sincere hope is that this weak push buys more rope for Israel and their franchises can burn.In the last few days we have learned that S.A. is a basket case, tied to Israel, whom S.A. convieniently doesn't recognize and that's what you call Zionism.The pacifist and rational person inside of me wishes to ask why. The realist part of me wants Israel and Saudi Arabia glassed. That's for the pacifist and rational part of me at the end of the day. Your quick observation that "they have the whole thing" is not only clear, it shows what a joke the last century has been when you unpack the implications.You're birilliant.

In reply to by Ms No

Wahooo Wed, 11/08/2017 - 22:57 Permalink

Saudi Arabia will be a pushover. It will fall so quickly
To the Persians that USrael won't even have time to react. Let the crescent begin!

dogismycopilot Wed, 11/08/2017 - 23:51 Permalink

The Saudi Princes have been stealing from the people of Saudi for a very long time.Everyone in Saudi is happy this is happening.MBS is not too be fucked with these days....not unless you want to end up camping out at the Radisson Hotel in Riyadh (word is there are SEVERAL 5-star prisons now).And MBS doesn't tolerate fake news. He'll lock up the CNN idiots faster than you can steal a camel.  

ThinkAgain Thu, 11/09/2017 - 01:24 Permalink

MBS should start asap seawater based agriculture in the north to boost NEOM asap. This will attract foreign capital at no limits.… the EU has a MENA fund of E 20 billion to get this going.All chemical corporations would jump the bandwagon instantly.All global food brand operators and agro corporations too.All food deficit nations (like China) will fund it to the max.http://www.desertcorp.com… desert, sunlight, seawater and halophyte (salt water loving) crops.Salicornia as winning crop in this (high in good protein and good fats).No tropical forest demolishing anymore as salicornia is a huge soy and palm contender. Everybody happy. Everybody. He needs that. Severely. 

scaleindependent Thu, 11/09/2017 - 01:36 Permalink

I haven't seen anyone mention the logical corollary to all of this.Oil is combustible. Oil is spent.Therefore, easy profits on EROI is over. Look at S. Arabia as evidence. That is the scariest crap.

sparksmass Thu, 11/09/2017 - 02:41 Permalink

As far as I know, KSA has maybe the lowest cost of production of a barrel of oil in the world. Oil selling below their "break -even", meaning the cost to meet spending plans and balance the budget, is not the same as losing money on every barrel they sell.

Last of the Mi… Thu, 11/09/2017 - 06:54 Permalink

This year they'll be giving away gold lexus' for Christmas, now that's a real step down. Monkeys in the desert with unehard of amounts of cash killing each other off for a piece of the pie. To me, this is real entertainment. 

shortonoil Thu, 11/09/2017 - 07:14 Permalink

 The cost of running the Kingdom moves up, and down with the price of oil. That cost will now always move down less than the price of oil moves down, and it will always move up more than the price moves up. There is no way for the Saudis to win. Until the sciences affecting oil production are applied, we will be hearing from economists who will continue to guess wrong. Petroleum production is now caught in the grips of advanced depletion, and the old Giants like Ghawar will soon be dying. Old kingdoms, like the Saudis, will be going along with them. Your investment options are not as clear cut as you might have believed.

MrNoItAll shortonoil Thu, 11/09/2017 - 21:23 Permalink

I don't think the economists are guessing wrong. I think they're purposefully spewing just exactly what their superiors tell them to spew, the goal being to keep up appearances -- to avoid frightening the ignorant masses. Maybe some of them believe what they're actually projecting, but those ones aren't guessing, those ones are just idiots.

Black Swan rising?

In reply to by shortonoil

Son of Captain Nemo Thu, 11/09/2017 - 08:04 Permalink

And guess which one of those parties has "more" of it and which one "less"???...

Hint: The one who has the largest number of military facilities around those places that have oil is the "LOSER"!!!

DaveA Thu, 11/09/2017 - 15:49 Permalink

I have a solution: Saudi Arabia starts a war with Iran, thinking their expensive US-made weapons will carry the day. Turns out the best weapons are useless in the hands of inbred morons, and Saudi loses. Iran and Russia divide the loot, and Saudi's surplus population, possessing no useful skills whatever, is sent to live with Mama Merkel.