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Oil Production Cuts Mean Attorney Jobs

January 2017

Legal job opportunities in the energy sector generally rise and fall with the ups and downs in the price of crude oil. OPEC, Russia and 12 other oil producing nations, their budgets hammered by declining sales revenue, recently announced their first production cuts in many years. Oil prices immediately rose by 5 percent. That means you can expect U.S. hiring activity to increase.

OPEC’s 2014 decision to maintain production levels even in the face of a global oil glut were a naked attempt to kill off the U.S. fracking industry that made America the world’s number one oil and gas producer. Keeping prices low made it uneconomical for many U.S. firms to continue drilling for shale oil and gas. The strategy was partially successful, particularly in the oil sector, in which attorney hiring was rendered static. Gas companies fared a bit better. There was also a modest negative impact on legal employment in the renewables sector because lower fossil fuel prices made it more difficult for renewables to compete on price.