Saudi Arabia’s Energy Minister, Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman, is prepared to give oil short sellers a piece of his mind at a high-profile Wall Street investor conference next week.
And short sellers should listen up.
The annual J.P. Morgan/Robin Hood Investors Conference—to be held as a virtual forum on June 16—has Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman lined up as a speaker alongside Ray Dalio, Dawn Fitzpatrick, Paul Tudor Jones II, David Tepper, and Cathie Wood.
The energy minister of Saudi Arabia has been targeting short sellers and oil speculators for nearly a year, famously warning traders last September not to bet against oil.
“We will never leave this market unattended. I want the guys in the trading floors to be as jumpy as possible. I’m going to make sure whoever gambles on this market will be ouching like hell,” Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman said at one of the meetings of the OPEC+ alliance in September 2020.
At the supershort OPEC+ meeting last week that reaffirmed the group’s plan to gradually unwind 2.1 million barrels per day (bpd) of oil cuts by July, the Saudi minister said that wanted to bring “speculators” in the oil market “to their knees,” as the Financial Times reports.
And of course, Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman famously described as a “La La Land sequel” the International Energy Agency’s report that the world wouldn’t need new oil and gas investments if it wants to reach net-zero emissions by 2050. The minister slammed the report in no uncertain terms, saying it was “a sequel of the La La Land movie. Why should I take it seriously?”
The energy transition and the road to net-zero are expected to feature prominently at the Robin Hood Investors Conference next week, considering the growing ESG trend among investors.
The Saudis, via their energy minister, will surely take this opportunity to speak about the role of oil and gas in the future of the global energy systems—and on the perils of shorting oil and crossing the OPEC kingpin.
By Julianne Geiger for Oilprice.com
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Short sellers and speculators stand no chance against such a tide. Saudi Energy minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman will warn them that they will have their fingers burnt if they try.
He will further emphasize that oil and gas are here to stay well into the very distant future and that neither courtrooms nor boardrooms or the IEA’s net-zero emissions roadmap which he ridiculed as a sequel to la-la-land movie could change this fact.
Dr Mamdouh G Salameh
International Oil Economist
Visiting Professor of Energy Economics at ESCP Europe Business School, London