Budgets matter

It must be difficult being a macroeconomic analyst in Venezuela. Case in point: the country’s budget. We all know the government spends via the official budget, which gets approved via the legislative process, with all the trappings of a pseudo-democracy. But then, we also know the government spends money outside of the budget via the BUDGET.…


Could the Saudi strategy be working?

Take it away, … “Slumping oil prices are putting pressure on U.S. drillers. The number of active rigs drilling for oil and gas fell by their most in two months, according to the latest data from oil services firm Baker Hughes. There were 19 oil rigs that were removed from operation as of Oct.…

Crude Oil Brent

The predators from Riyadh

Yesterday, French economist Jean Tirole won the Nobel Prize in Economics for his work in understanding imperfect markets such as monopolies or oligopolies. Personally, Tirole has been a huge influence in how I view the world. His graduate-level textbook on Industrial Organization remains, to me, the standard in the field, even though it is getting…


Graph of the day

I’m not sure what the calculations were to get at this number, but the figure is significantly lower than Monaldi’s estimate of $200 as a breakeven price. Regardless, we’re far from where we would like to be.


Citgo on the block again?

As pundits mull Venezuela’s big win in yesterday’s ICSID ruling on the ExxonMobil case (don’t miss this interesting comment from Venetexan), the Maduro administration continues to ponder what to do about Citgo. A few weeks ago, Maduro himself had suggested that the Citgo sale privatization was a no-go. But yesterday, Reuters said our friendly French bankers have asked for more…


Revolution at 45%, and dropping

I concur with Setty: this talk by experts Daniel Kerner of Eurasia Group, Chevron’s Ali Moshiri, and our friend Francisco Monaldi of Harvard is well worth your time. It talks about the politics and the geology of oil in Argentina and Venezuela. The key part is Francisco’s estimate that the revolution needs the price of a…