Low oil prices could affect Oklahoma’s economy for years to come

Brin Beu | KOCO Tulsa

Oil prices are hovering around $9 per barrel Tuesday about 24 hours after they dropped below $0 for the first time in history.

The latest price is still dangerously low for Oklahoma’s economy. KOCO 5 spoke with oil and gas and economic experts, who said it’s very likely the state will see 10,000 if not 20,000 people lose their jobs in Oklahoma’s oil and gas industries. They said oil needs to be in the $60 to $70 range for producers to make a profit.

“COVID-19 has almost wiped out 10 years of economic growth on-demand,” said Dan Rickman, economics professor at Oklahoma State University.

Rickman told KOCO 5 that he has been using a certain algorithm to predict how dangerously low oil prices will affect Oklahoma’s economy.

“We are looking at a couple of very bad years in the state economy,” he said.

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