Is Biden Making His Next Oil Blunder?

Keith Kohl

Written By Keith Kohl

Posted June 18, 2024

Sometimes I can’t help but wonder when it comes to energy policy if the Biden Administration aims directly at their foot before it pulls the trigger or whether it’s just accidental. 

Either way, it’s never smart to play with a loaded gun, which is precisely what they’re doing. 

It’s not the first time we’ve gotten this feeling. Earlier this year when President Biden put a pause on pending approvals of LNG exports immediately came to mind. Over the last eight years, the U.S. has turned into a dominant force in global LNG markets. 

Imagine where EU members like Germany would be without U.S. LNG right now. Once the flow of Russian gas stopped in 2022, Germany turned to us for help. 

Even though sound energy policy isn’t really this administration’s forte, we may see an oil blunder this summer that could be devastating under certain circumstances. 

Can you guess what it is?

I’ll give you a hint… we already shot ourselves in the foot two years ago, and soon we might go back to finish the job. 

Summer Oil Blunders Are Back

Depending on which side of the political aisle you reside, you either see President Biden’s tapping of the Strategic Petroleum Reserve in 2022 as a savvy political move to quell market prices, or one of the single greatest blunders ever made in U.S. energy policy. 

The idea of having a strategic oil reserve had been floated around Washington D.C. since 1944, when Interior Secretary Harold Ickes suggested that it might be a smart idea to build up an emergency crude supply. 

During the 1950s, President Truman tried to get one off the ground, and his successor, President Eisenhower, also thought it was a good idea. 

However, it wasn’t officially created until President Ford’s term in 1975 via the Energy Policy and Conservation Act, and the first barrels — of Saudi light crude, I might add — started filling the SPR within two years. 

By the time President Biden was sworn into office, there were roughly 661 million barrels in the SPR.

Look, I won’t begrudge the President for making the move he did in 2022 and selling an unprecedented amount of crude from the SPR. You probably remember that oil prices got pretty dicey back then, with WTI crude peaking around $120 per barrel as the Russia-Ukraine war escalated. 

Like it or not, it was a decision that was made at the time to provide some short-term relief to a red-hot oil market, at the expense of long-term risk. 

Even though the SPR stands around 370.9 million barrels today, you’d think that the primary focus would be to refill it as soon as possible, and preferably within the desired price range, right?

If you’re asking yourself what could possibly go wrong now, may I present to you the latest news that the Biden administration would tap back into the SPR this summer if oil prices rose too high. 

I’ve told you before that the SPR release in 2022 was a one-trick pony — the last tool on the President’s utility belt to manipulate crude prices. 

And let’s be absolutely clear here: Tapping into the SPR would constitute the single biggest energy blunder in recent history. 

Not only is the SPR inventory at its lowest since the early 1980s, but do we really want to drain it further simply to manipulate market prices during an election year? 

After all, WTI is trading just shy of $80 per barrel as I write this, which is well below the triple-digits it was in two years ago. In fact, gasoline prices are lower compared to a year ago, according to AAA. 

If you asked me if I thought it was even possible that we’d tap back into the SPR, I would’ve thought you were crazy. What makes the situation even worse is the dismal efforts to refill the SPR — approximately 14 million barrels since last year.

However, this story isn’t all doom-and-gloom, and opens up a rather large opportunity for individual investors like us that can pinpoint the true value in the U.S. oil sector. 

Unfortunately, the days of drill-baby-drill are over. The shale boom that caused a surge in U.S. oil production has slowed considerably. 

Today, it’s no longer about a debt-fueled drilling frenzy to put as many drill bits into the ground as you can; the name of the game all comes down to efficiency — boosting productivity and reducing costs. 

And right now, that’s precisely what my readers and I have uncovered in the Permian Basin — trust me, this is one you’re going to have to see for yourself.

Until next time,

Keith Kohl Signature

Keith Kohl

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A true insider in the technology and energy markets, Keith’s research has helped everyday investors capitalize from the rapid adoption of new technology trends and energy transitions. Keith connects with hundreds of thousands of readers as the Managing Editor of Energy & Capital, as well as the investment director of Angel Publishing’s Energy Investor and Technology and Opportunity.

For nearly two decades, Keith has been providing in-depth coverage of the hottest investment trends before they go mainstream — from the shale oil and gas boom in the United States to the red-hot EV revolution currently underway. Keith and his readers have banked hundreds of winning trades on the 5G rollout and on key advancements in robotics and AI technology.

Keith’s keen trading acumen and investment research also extend all the way into the complex biotech sector, where he and his readers take advantage of the newest and most groundbreaking medical therapies being developed by nearly 1,000 biotech companies. His network includes hundreds of experts, from M.D.s and Ph.D.s to lab scientists grinding out the latest medical technology and treatments. You can join his vast investment community and target the most profitable biotech stocks in Keith’s Topline Trader advisory newsletter.

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