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Are the Saudis Killing Cheap Oil?

Murphy's law — that which can go wrong, will — is about to bite Saudi Arabia in the butt … and you and me in the wallet.

The country's decision to let oil prices collapse as a way to maintain market share is already causing big problems in the oily kingdom. There are rising concerns, even inside the country's central bank, that the Saudi government faces an existential threat to its existence in the very near future.

It's already leading to global problems that absolutely will tear through the oil market of the future. And that's where the problems for my wallet and yours begin…

Lately, I have been tracking oil project cancellations because of the collapse in oil prices.

So far there are at least 46 projects that major energy exploration companies around the world have cancelled. Russia, the Gulf of Mexico, deepwater ocean projects, Canada, Asia, South America — all have seen projects killed.

Total value: more than $200 billion.

Total oil production bypassed: in excess of 20 billion barrels of reserves, which, if all those barrels were in one country, would place it among the 15 largest reserves in the world.

That has future effects. Very, very meaningful future effects.

They are the same effects that happened a quarter-century ago, when oil prices had fallen into the teens. Exploration companies saw no reason to hunt for new reserves because the market price didn't justify the expense.

And yet all the while, existing reserves were dwindling with each barrel of oil produced, and demand was growing as the world economy continued to expand.

The upshot: Oil-production companies reached a point where available supply at...