OPEC Cuts Oil Production
Bid to halt price slide after summer high
By Peter Fearon,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 10, 2008 2:23 AM CDT
An oil worker climbs the steps of a new oil rig being drilled in the Sakhir, Bahrain, desert during sunset . OPEC is cutting production to halt a drop in oil prices.    (AP Photo)
camera-icon View 2 more images

(Newser) – The international oil cartel OPEC announced today it's reducing production by more than half a million barrels a day, the Financial Times reports. The decision by the cartel, which controls 40% of world oil production, stunned most analysts. The move comes as oil prices, after spiking to an all-time high in July, have dropped 30%, bringing relief to many world economies.

Prices have dipped significantly in recent weeks driven by lower demand, increased supply and a stronger US dollar, said an OPEC statement. “All indicates a shift in market sentiment causing downside risks to the global oil market outlook,” the statement added. OPEC now faces the difficult task of ensuring members abide by its decision. A significant portion of the reduction will have to come from Saudi Arabia, which boosted production unilaterally this summer when prices were high.