What the Saudi royal reshuffle means for oil thumbnail Uncertainty hit oil markets on Wednesday, with analysts contemplating what a major reshuffle of Saudi Arabia’s ruling elite might meant for the commodity. On Wednesday, it was announced that Saudi Arabia’s King Salman bin Abdulaziz had appointed a new heir and rotated some of the top ministerial jobs, accelerating the personnel changes set in motion when he took the throne in January. As Saudi Arabia is the world’s top oil exporter and the dominant force in OPEC (the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries), any change to its power structure is of major interest to energy markets. This is particularly the case given OPEC’s maintenance of oil production at high levels—in order to retain market share—which is viewed as exacerbating the 40 percent price decline seen since last June. However, analysts said that Wednesday’s personnel changes, which include the promotion […]