Saudi Arabia may finally be willing to work with producer nations to put a floor under oil prices after allowing market forces to determine the cost of a barrel of crude since November 2014, according to Jan Stuart, global energy economist at Credit Suisse.
In fact, the nearly 2-year-old policy, which has sent benchmark crude prices as low as $26 a barrel and hammered the kingdom's competitors, is not incompatible with intervening in oil markets, Stuart told CNBC's "Squawk on the Street" on Monday.
Former Saudi Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources Ali al-Naimi long ago indicated the world's largest oil exporter would consider adjusting production to prop up prices, he noted. But the requirements for that intervention haven't occurred until now, he explained.
"The Saudis have been terribly consistent. They have said all along in the last two years plus, that they need the market to correct the supply surplus. They need the cost curve to come into play. ... They need for the high-cost producers to throttle back their investments, and that's being done," Stuart said.