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image: Heinz-Peter Bader / Reuters

Saudi Arabia is slashing oil shipments to US, a tactic that boosts prices and may rile Trump

November 16, 2018

Saudi Arabia is slashing shipments of crude to the United States, a move that appears calibrated to boost oil prices after a swift and punishing sell-off.

The move could put the kingdom at loggerheads with President Donald Trump, who wants to drive down energy costs for Americans and frequently accuses the Saudi-led OPEC cartel of jacking up oil prices.

The Saudis are loading fewer barrels on ships bound for the United States this month, continuing a trend that began in September, according to an analysis by tanker-tracking firm ClipperData. The firm’s loading estimate suggests that U.S. imports of Saudi crude oil could soon fall toward the lowest levels on record.

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