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Trump tweets ‘OPEC monopoly must get prices down now’



trump offshore drilling oil wind energy
Donald Trump speaks in the Roosevelt Room of the White House in
Washington, Friday, April 28, 2017, before signing an Executive
Order directing the Interior Department to begin review of
restrictive drilling policies for the outer-continental shelf.
From left are, Vice President Mike Pence, Rep. Don Young,
R-Alaska, the president, Sen. Bill Cassidy, R-La., and Commerce
Secretary Wilbur Ross.

Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais

President Donald Trump on Thursday once again tweeted his belief
that major oil producers in the Middle East are conspiring to
keep oil prices high, seemingly threatening to withdraw military
resources from the region if producers do not help to lower

“We protect the countries of the Middle East, they would not be
safe for very long without us, and yet they continue to push for
higher and higher oil prices!” he
said in an early morning tweet.
 “We will remember. The
OPEC monopoly must get prices down now!”

Oil prices have increased from around $50 per barrel last
September, to more than $70 per barrel today, with a rebalancing
of the supply and demand disparity in the market, as well as
major weather and geopolitical events playing a part.

Trump’s tweet pushed oil prices lower, with the price of
West Texas Intermediate crude oil
— the US benchmark —
falling from $71.28 per barrel to a low of $70.86, a drop of
around 0.58%. Oil remains is still up about 1.8% over the past

Screen Shot 2018 09 20 at 12.47.42Markets Insider

Trump has
consistently complained that oil prices are too high
following a significant uptick in prices which has been passed on
at the pump to US drivers.

High gas prices can be an issue for voters, and Trump’s attacks
come just a couple of months ahead of US midterms,
where analysts say rising prices could hurt
Republicans. Prices at the pump hit four-year highs back in

For this year’s April-September driving season, the EIA
expects US
regular gasoline retail prices to average $2.87 a gallon
, up
19% from a year ago, mostly due to expectations of higher crude
oil prices.

Trump’s tweet comes about two months after
a similar tweet in July,
in which he also called OPEC a
monopoly and tacitly threatened to withdraw US support.

“The OPEC Monopoly must remember that gas prices are up
& they are doing little to help,” he tweeted on July 5. “If
anything, they are driving prices higher as the United States
defends many of their members for very little $’s. This must be a
two way street.” 

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