Reuters’ John Kemp has an irritating way of letting the facts speak for themselves. Well, irritating to some, anyway, and last week it was the Saudis. He’s charted their oil production against the Brent price to test whether they are indeed still adjusting their exports to target $100 a barrel.

The short answer from the chart (click on the link below) might seem to be Yes, sort of, as exports rose following last March’s peak price for Brent of over $120, and fell back following the June low around $95. A longer answer might imply that the $100 target is turning into a floor, as Javier Blas asks in his Commodies Daily for the FT.

But the really unexpected aspect of the chart, to me at any rate, is the kingdom’s huge appetite for eating its own cooking. Of the roughly 10m barrels a day it pumps, a quarter is now consumed internally. As Blas points out, Saudi Arabia is now in the top six oil consuming nations, as its relatively tiny population tries to air condition the desert.

SAUDI oil

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