Report: US could surpass Saudi Arabia as oil producer by 2020

While ­­the United States might become the biggest producer of oil, that doesn’t mean Americans will no longer import oil. Indeed, Americans will still see relatively high prices due to growing worldwide demand.

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The boom has surpassed even the rosiest predictions from experts and is driving economic growth in states that have been open to new drilling methods such as North Dakota, Texas and Wyoming. Hydraulic fracturing, a method of extracting oil and gas by cracking open long, thin layers of shale with water, sand and chemicals, has been key to the boom. High prices have incentivized exploration for these sources.

This is not the first time that some have predicted the United States becoming the world’s top oil producer. John Freeman, an analyst with Raymond James & Associates, has previously predicted just that.