OPEC members have been suffering from the dramatic decline in oil prices over the past two years, which has seen crude dropping to between $40 and $50 per barrel from more than $100 in 2014. Since OPEC declared its noncutting policy on November 2014, both government budgets and economies of oil-exporting countries felt tremendous pressure. Saudi Arabia’s economy had especially been seriously affected because of the strategy against the USA.
Faced with these challenges, OPEC members finally agreed in a September 2016 meeting in Algeria to cut production in principle. Exact quotas were determined in late November. After this meeting, OPEC oil production began to decrease and the oil prices began to increase. In this study, we found that there is a relation between OPEC’s oil production and oil prices. We observed the monthly data from November 2014 to May 2017, and we showed that the OPEC’s influence on oil prices are dwindling. OPEC is still important on prices, and the announcements have an effect on these prices; however, this impact is dwindling.
Recently, on May 2017, OPEC and other oil producers are on course to agree to an extension of supply cuts by a further nine months. According to Forbes, crude oil prices had gone up by more than 9% in November, following the initial agreement to reduce output, as opposed to just a 2% jump in oil prices when OPEC announced the extension of the cut. This not only indicates that the proposed output restrictions are not enough to have a meaningful impact on oil prices but also hints at the fact that OPEC’s power to influence crude oil prices is waning.