Catch up fast: The mystery of Trump's OPEC call about gas prices
Donald Trump with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman Al Saud. Photo: Bandar Algaloud / Saudi Kingdom Council / Handout/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images
President Trump told reporters on Friday that "gasoline prices are coming down. I called up OPEC. I said, 'You got to bring them down. You got to bring them down.' And gasoline is coming down.'"
- Later in the day Trump tweeted, "Spoke to Saudi Arabia and others about increasing oil flow."
But, but, but: The Wall Street Journal reports that Trump hasn't spoken with OPEC's secretary general or the oil minister with Saudi Arabia, OPEC's most powerful producer.
- And per Bloomberg, Trump "hasn’t spoken to anyone at OPEC’s headquarters to discuss oil production."
The intrigue: White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders, said in a statement Saturday, "The White House is in regular contact with the world’s leading energy producing nations, including OPEC members." She added...
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Where it stands: Oil prices are heading downward on Monday after dropping by roughly 3% on Friday, a stark contrast to the price spike that followed last Monday's announcement of tighter sanctions against Iran.
- “The U.S. president clearly on-boarded the Saudis before tightening the screws on Iran,” PVM Oil Associates' Stephen Brennock tells Bloomberg.
The big picture: Trump has often prodded OPEC via Twitter to argue for lower oil prices.
- The latest comments arrive at a tricky time for the administration, which is seeking to choke off more of Iran's crude exports without seeing rises in consumer costs that create domestic political risks.