There were high hopes for shale at one time, with widespread expectations that the decline in oil prices could enable the U.S. to be energy independent by 2020, but that is looking more of a pipe dream for now.
The U.S. produces around 9.2 million barrels a day of oil, according to the latest available government data from February, 320,000 barrels less than the same month a year before. Remarking on the data, the International Energy Agency (IEA) said it was in "stark contrast to just one year earlier, when output was growing by 1.3 million barrels a day. Preliminary indications for March and April suggest output continued to fall, as producers removed another 72 oil rigs from service over the past 10 weeks." In the meantime, U.S. net imports totaled 7.3 million barrels in February showing that the dream of energy independence is far off.
One analyst told CNBC that he doubted the very foundation of the U.S. shale oil industry which he said had been founded and expanded on cheap money and had effectively been a "Ponzi scheme" – an investment operation that generates returns for older investors by acquiring new investors.
"I think in ten years' time someone is going to write a great book and make a great movie about the shale industry in the U.S. because I think it is, quite frankly, one of the biggest Ponzi schemes known to mankind," Gavin Wendt, founding director & senior resource analyst at MineLife, told CNBC on Thursday.Read the whole article by clicking here.
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