Trump to Meet with Oil Executives to Discuss Government Aid

President Trump is set to meet with oil executives to discuss government aid to the industry, a media report says. One issue for discussion will be potential tariffs on U.S. imports of Saudi oil.
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With oil prices having taken a record plunge, President Donald Trump and chiefs of some of the country’s largest oil companies on Friday reportedly will gather to discuss how the government can assist the industry.

Knowledgeable sources told The Wall Street Journal that participants will include Exxon Mobil  (XOM) - Get Report CEO Darren Woods, Chevron  (CVX) - Get Report CEO Mike Wirth, Occidental Petroleum  (OXY) - Get Report CEO Vicki Hollub and Harold Hamm, executive chairman of Continental Resources  (CLR) - Get Report.

U.S. oil prices dropped by two-thirds last quarter, the largest drop on record in a data set going back to 1983, according to Dow Jones. 

Slumping demand, as economies get hammered by the coronavirus pandemic, and a production-growth war between Saudi Arabia and Russia have sparked oil’s dive.

One issue Trump and the oil executives will discuss is possible tariffs on imports on oil into the U.S. from Saudi Arabia, according to two of The Journal’s sources. 

That would likely boost oil prices and potentially increase demand for U.S. oil.

Trump views tariffs as a potential solution to many of the country’s economic problems.

But among the executives, only Hamm favors tariffs, the sources told the paper.

As for major oil stocks, “given its low debt, we continue to see Chevron as the safest dividend play in the group,” Morningstar analyst Allen Good wrote in a report last week.

“It has ample balance-sheet capacity to ride out an extended period of low prices, making its nearly 10% yield not indicative of the dividend’s safety.”