RIYADH (Reuters) – The surge in oil prices to record highs will shield OPEC nations, some of which peg their currencies to the U.S. dollar, from current dollar weakness, a Saudi newspaper quoted OPEC sources as saying on Saturday.
OPEC members have no immediate plans to hold consultations on a rise in oil prices to record peaks above $82 a barrel last week, al-Riyadh newspaper reported, quoting unnamed OPEC sources it said were well-informed.
An OPEC source told Reuters on Tuesday ministers would hold consultations if oil prices stayed over $80 a barrel for 15 to 20 days.
“The decline in the dollar’s exchange rate had an impact on OPEC member states’ revenue … But the rise in crude prices can help overcome this decline in revenues and ensure continuity of energy investments planned by these states over the next five years,” an OPEC source said, according to al-Riyadh.
The U.S. Federal Reserve’s decision to cut its benchmark interest rate by 50 basis points last week helped drive the euro to a record high against the greenback above $1.41 on Friday.
OPEC members, including Saudi Arabia, the world’s biggest oil exporter, peg their currencies to the dollar and have been hit by weakness in the U.S. currency despite an economic boom at home.
On Thursday, oil — up a third since the start of the year — hit a record above $84. Oil has traded above $80 for the past week, despite OPEC’s decision this month to raise output in November.
“OPEC believes the rise in crude prices is not due to a decline in supply but is due to psychological factors among speculators … and obstacles facing supplies from the Gulf of Mexico,” the newspaper added.