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    Oil prices continued to fall this week but stock markets shrugged off the disarray this continued to cause in global markets after Janet Yellen whispered soothing words in their ears after the Fed's last meeting of the year on Wednesday. Mrs. Yellen has become a "bull whisperer" - fearful of upsetting the equity market, she cloaks her words in indirection and equivocation in an effort to keep them calm as she prays for an economic lift-off that will take her institution off the hook.

    Unfortunately, her patient is likely to be very disappointed, for it would take an economic miracle the likes of which hasn't been seen in this country since the years after the Second World War to deal with the mountain of existing debt and future liabilities that are going to bury us.

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price of oil

Oil Prices: Black Swan or the Work of Vultures?

oil prices

Over the past few of days, three separate prognosticators have claimed the fall in oil prices is a "black swan" event - in other words, an outlier, a development that fails to follow any normal pattern.

This isn't a black swan, but calling it one may be a good way of clouding up what really is happening.

In this case, there's another motive at work - and the black swan becomes a convenient cover...

Crude Oil Prices and the Coming of the Second Arab Spring

arab egypt crowd

During the first Arab Spring, some countries were able to avoid the unrest by buying off their populations with goodies. But today in those countries, unemployment is increasing and alternatives to centrally subsidized survival are disappearing.

That's because this untenable balance has been sustained by the price of oil. As long as oil flowed, net outflows from the national coffers could be sustained.

Falling crude oil prices mean that balance is ending - and the prospect of renewed violence is making a big comeback.

Crude Oil Prices Today Approach Historic Bear Market Level

Crude oil prices today

Crude oil prices today (Wednesday) plummeted again after the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) reported an increase in U.S. oil supplies.

The EIA reported that U.S. supplies were up by 1.5 million barrels in the week ending Dec. 5. Analysts had been expecting a drop of 3 million barrels.

With oil prices at $60.63, we're quickly approaching the third-largest bear market for oil in the last 30 years...

Crude Oil Price Chart: This Is the 4th-Largest Drop in 30 Years

crude oil price chart

West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude oil dropped to $63.38 yesterday (Monday). At that level, the price of oil is now down more than 42% since September of 2013.

As this crude oil price chart shows, that's the fourth-largest bear market for oil in the last 30 years.

And while this isn't the biggest drop for oil, it is the longest bear market among the top five dips.

Here's the full story...

Crude Oil Prices and the Coming Fall of OPEC

Crude Oil Prices

Every 10 or 20 years a series of watershed events come together that change the face of the international energy picture.

The Saudi-led war on crude oil prices is one of these pivotal situations.

And while others fret about what the OPEC production move means, I'm actually meeting with the guys who made the decision.

I can tell you that what's unfolding here in the desert will have a decisive impact on producers, end users, and government/corporate policymakers worldwide.

Of course, I've been involved in a fair share of all of this for over 40 years, from both the public and private sector side.

Much of that is coming together in my current slate of meetings with some of the most powerful people in the energy world.

What I learn in these gatherings will allow everyday investors to make some heavy money as these pivotal changes kick in...

Why Bakken Shale Stocks Will Continue to Get Crushed

Bakken shale stocks

Crude oil prices have fallen precipitously for five straight months. Since June, West Texas Intermediate (WTI) has dropped 29.3%.

And Bakken Shale stocks have been taking the brunt of that price collapse.

But low oil prices aren't the only problems for Bakken shale stocks. In fact, there are three major problems with Bakken oil that are getting worse because of falling prices...

The Economic Fallacy of Lower Oil Prices Will Hit Consumers Right Here…

oil prices

Media elites and Wall Street cheerleaders are greeting lower oil prices with open arms. 

Investors should beware these self-appointed experts bearing gifts.

Oil prices are falling for reasons that should be surprising to nobody: supply has been rising and demand has been falling.  If prolonged, which it is likely to be, the drop in oil prices is going to be destabilizing geopolitically and damaging economically. 

For those who want to believe in a magical economic rebirth as the price of oil falls, well, good luck with that.

My view is distinctly different, and it demands we look at the whole economic picture as it is, not as others want. It's time for some hard truths...

What's Next for Crude Oil Prices and Stocks After OPEC Meeting

crude oil prices

Last week's OPEC meeting in Vienna, Austria, was billed as the most important gathering of the cartel in years, with huge implications for crude oil prices.

The meeting's importance was felt almost immediately. After OPEC nations announced they would not cut oil production, oil prices plummeted. WTI crude oil is now down 37.8% from June and Brent oil is down nearly 40%.

Here's what investors can expect from oil prices moving forward, and the best strategy for oil stocks now...

OPEC's Impact on Oil Prices: An Exclusive from the "Inside"

OPEC's Impact on Oil Prices

At the OPEC meeting in Vienna last week, the cartel decided to maintain oil production levels. WTI crude oil prices fell to $63.72 in the aftermath. That's a 37.8% drop since June.

Money Morning's Global Energy Strategist Dr. Kent Moors is in Dubai this week meeting with some of the world's top oil policymakers.

Here's his inside look at OPEC's impact on oil prices...

How the OPEC Meeting "Showdown" Will Affect Crude Oil Prices

OPEC meeting

As the price of oil continues to fall, all eyes are on the OPEC meeting scheduled for tomorrow (Thursday, Nov. 27).

The biggest decision for the 12 member nations is whether to curb production. That would be done in an effort to stabilize global oil prices.

Here's the impact the various outcomes of tomorrow's meeting would have on crude oil prices...

Crude Oil Prices: A Billionaire Insider Just Made a Bold Bet

crude oil prices

A very dramatic development in the oil market took place last week. It involved a well-known insider and a bullish bet on crude oil prices.

Harold Hamm, CEO of Continental Resources (NYSE: CLR), announced that his company - a major producer in U.S. unconventional oil basins - had unwound its hedge positions.

In a single bold move, Hamm had made one of the biggest bets ever on rising oil prices - here's why...

Why Lower Oil Prices Won't Kill the Renewable Energy Boom

oil prices

Whenever oil prices drop, everyone always wonders how it will affect wind and solar power.

It follows from the traditional assumption that renewables like these are only competitive when oil and natural gas prices are high.

After all, the early stages of wind and solar power came with a hefty front-loaded price tag, requiring massive government subsidies to both producers and end users to get off the ground.

Some states even introduced legal measures that required that utilities buy a certain percentage of their energy needs only from renewables.

All of this only added to the wider perception that renewables couldn't truly contend, especially if oil and natural gas prices fell.

But those days are now rapidly coming to an end...

As Crude Oil Prices Fall, These Drillers Benefit – Here's Why

crude oil prices

Thanks to the drop in crude oil prices, some TV pundits are now talking about the end of the "new" oil age. With oil now trading in a band between $80 and $88 a barrel, there's a "new normal" for crude.

But lower oil prices never hit everyone the same. The little-known truth is that, in some cases, lower crude oil prices actually make some companies even more attractive.

Let me explain...

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