With oil prices on the rise, BP Capital chairman T. Boone Pickens weighs in on why he sees prices continuing to increase, what is needed to boost the U.S. economy and his thoughts on the 2016 presidential race.
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“November of ’14 we had 1609 rigs drilling for oil in the United States, today we have 342, that’s enough right there. When you shut down the rigs you’re not adding production and you immediately experience decline,” Pickens explained to the FOX Business Network’s Maria Bartiromo about why supply was a key issue driving up the price of oil.
On whether it was Saudi Arabia’s intent to kill the shale industry in the U.S., Pickens responded, “Well you’ve had five times since 1980 where the oil price has dropped at least 50% from its high. Five times it’s happened, four times the Saudis have balanced the market by cutting their production. They said before this one happened they would not cut. So what they told the United States is ‘you are the new swing producer.’ Well, we swing because of economics here, they don’t call up and say ‘shut everything back.’”
Pickens then weighed in Saudi Arabia’s decision to take Aramco public.
“I wouldn’t put a penny in Aramco. Do you think I’m going to have stockholder’s rights? I’m a stockholder advocate.”
Pickens also discussed the U.S. economy and why the energy sector is the key to economic growth.
“There’s got to be something done for the economy. We’re sitting here with $19 trillion in debt, somebody’s got to address that sometime. And you’re going to have to address it by growing the economy. All these people that are running for president say ‘I’m going to growth the economy,’ but they tell you how they’re going to do it. The way to do it is off of cheap energy. We have the cheapest energy in the world and you rebuild the economy off of cheap energy, it’s that simple.”
Pickens then made his predictions in the 2016 presidential race.
“I think Donald Trump is going to be the nominee and I think he’ll beat Hillary Clinton. But Donald Trump still hasn’t told me how he’s going to do it [grow the economy] other than he says he’s going to do it,” but, Pickens continued, “I don’t think she [Hillary Clinton] will be the nominee for the Democrats.”