It’s worth noting the number of international reports that confirm the practice of rigging oil prices - including the OPEC report: There is strong statistical evidence that oil traders, rather than their clients, are the main actors in the current rise of crude oil prices, and even before the start of the financial crisis, large-scale oil price rigging had become the norm. This report examines the history of oil-price manipulation, and focuses on the major oil-trading venues (those based on oil supply at any given time). It is the product of the oil-price manipulation study group of the International Energy Agency (IEA), the Paris-based independent oil-research group, and the Oil Price Information Service (OPIS) of the U.K. Office of Oil Research. The report will be widely circulated ahead of the meeting of G20 leaders (which is scheduled for the first week in October) in Sochi, Russia from October 25-29. “Oil Manipulated in G20 Nations The findings have been compiled out of research conducted by seven professional organizations, including: OPIS the Oil Price Information Service,
the International Energy Agency,
the Food and Agriculture Organization,
the United Nations,
the World Customs Organization, and
the International Monetary Fund “Data from the seven oil-marketing businesses were gathered using real-time data sources that are publicly available in real time. The results of these real-time survey studies confirm that oil manipulation is widespread and is a significant player in the oil markets. A few examples of oil price manipulation have been established based on this research: Iraq in 2003 for example set a bid price for oil for each barrel of oil exported, and then kept adjusting it down as the price slipped and it became clear that the bid price for those exported for the US market fell below the spot price. This is because at times of the most rapid development of the Iraqi economy, the oil companies have bid for higher price, thereby giving their own products artificially higher market position. Such bid manipulations were discussed in the London talks between Iraq and the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) just prior to the oil shock of March of 2003. This oil shock set a global oil price of $10 per barrel. In the United States, the Saudi-led cartel set a higher bid price for crude oil at $9, but after realizing that the prices of their oil-producing peers were falling, set a lower bid price for the crude oil exported to the United States. The cartel has been accused by numerous academics, oil buyers and suppliers of manipulation and has made several countermeasures to combat this. “The authors of the ‘Oil Price Rigging in the G20’ study conclude that such manipulation is widespread and occurs in the same oil trading venues as in OPEC. Thus, other oil-exporting countries are also aware of the practice. In addition, the report shows that despite the large volume of oil price manipulation reported by oil companies, there are far fewer cases of manipulation of the oil price in international oil markets. Moreover, the report also shows that foreign policy decisions can affect oil price of both the oil and the oil-exporting countries. Thus, for example, the current policy of countries in Iraq and Venezuela to try to keep the price of their oil artificially high, has helped a group of companies operating in oil-producing countries to increase their share on the global market, an outcome that is often not fully seen because of global political and economic pressure on these oil exporting countries. “For more information, press releases and further documentation of this research, please contact John Moore ( [email protected] ), “ John Moore ( [email protected] ), “ Peter Brimelow ( [email protected] ), “ Robert Walker ( [email protected] ), “ Kevin Trenberth ( [email protected] ), “ David Price ( [email protected] ), “ Ben Kieffer ( [email protected] ), Eileen G. Gann ( [email protected] org ), and Kevin Nason ( [email protected] ). Please click on any of these links to read the full report online.