What Or Who Moves Oil Prices?

Forbes | Michael Lynch

Many people think that the Chinese curse “May you live in interesting times” refers to the fact that “interesting” equates with “unsettled”.

For those who follow a subject like oil, “interest” equates with “attention” including that from many would-be experts who are quick to opine, blog and publish.  Most of the books written about oil in the 1970s were misguided (to be polite), and most of those written in the past decade have been as well.  Higher prices yield more books and more authors, while lower prices translates into only those who are seriously involved in a subject continuing to publish. Recent work has tended to fall into two camps:  those who believe in “peak oil” and those who rely on microeconomics to explain oil market behavior.  Peak oil advocates include those like Jeremy Leggett, a former geologist, James Howard Kunstler, an urban planner, and Richard Heinberg, a journalist.  On the other side, former oil industry executives like Leonardo Maugeri and Robin Mills have produced more detailed analyses and now, two academic resource economists, Roberto Aguilera and Marian Radetzki, have published The Price of Oil, which covers the current oil market from the viewpoint of energy economics.

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