OPEC Cartel to Reap Record $1 Trillion

(Financial Times) — The Opec oil cartel, led by Saudi Arabia, will pocket a record of more than US$1tn in net oil revenues in 2012 as the annual average price for Brent, the benchmark, heads to an all-time high in spite of weak economic growth.

The windfall will provide fresh capital to some of the world’s largest sovereign wealth funds. United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait, the most influential members of the cartel, are home to three of the world’s 10 largest SWFs by assets under management, according to estimates by the SWF Institute.

With one trading day left before the year-end, Brent oil prices are on the point of seeing an average for the year of about $111.5 a barrel, higher than the previous all-time high set in 2011 of $110.9.

The benchmark closed at or above $100 every trading day in 2012, bar 24 in June and early July.

In January, Ali Naimi, the Saudi oil minister, said that the world’s largest oil producer aimed to keep oil prices at the triple-digit level throughout 2012. “If we are able as producers and consumers to average $100 I think the world economy would be in better shape,” Mr Naimi told CNN at the time.

Read more here: http://www.cnn.com/2012/12/30/business/opec-record/

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