Trump Authorizes Release of Oil From U.S. Strategic Reserve

(Bloomberg) -- President Donald Trump said he’s authorized releasing oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve following the attacks on Saudi Arabia on Saturday, which sent Brent crude oil prices skyrocketing as much as 19%.

In tweets, the president said the amount of oil released would be determined “sufficient to keep the markets well-supplied.”

Trump’s comment follows one from the Department of Energy on Saturday, that the U.S. Is ready to “offset any disruptions to oil markets” after the Saudi facilities were attacked.

The 630-million-barrel SPR, the world’s largest supply of emergency crude, was set up after the Arab oil embargo in the 1970s. It was last tapped in 2011 in response to Libyan supply disruptions.

Trump also took the opportunity of the attacks on Saudi Arabia to push for speedier approval of oil pipelines. Unlike an SPR release, that action would have no immediate impact on prices or the availability of supplies.

In the tweet, Trump said he’d asked agencies “to expedite approvals of the oil pipelines currently in the permitting process in Texas and various other states.”

©2019 Bloomberg L.P.

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