This is second in a two-part series. For the first part, please see Market Meltdown Means More Pain for Oil Producers.
Soft economic data from Japan and China are combining with a global equities rout to create demand-side pressure on oil prices. Here are some of the economies that can expect to suffer should prices stay in the sub-$40 range for an extended period of time:
Libya is far and away the most fragile of the RBC’s ‘Fragile Five,’ – in fact, the Libyan state has already shattered into several warring fragments. And though the Libyan economy on a whole is highly dependent on oil (the IMF put the necessary oil price for Libya to balance its books at a staggering $215), low oil prices are not to blame for the country’s present anarchy. It’s a lack of security that plagues the Libyan economy, the fact that individual oil fields and tanker terminals are susceptible to attack from enterprising militias at any given time. This is what is blocking a return to stability, and until Libya is able to solve its governance problem the global fluctuations of energy prices will be but a hypothetical concern.