For those companies whose livelihood depended on the activity of the oil industry, chaos erupted in December 1985, but no one knew it. That month marked the start of the rapid decline in crude oil prices which persists today and perhaps will for some time. The dramatic fall of prices resulted from the dumping of an oversupply of crude oil, resulting from the need for money by Iran and Iraq to finance their costly war. Other nations, fearing a loss of world market share, followed suit, thereby creating a glut that exacerbated the tailspinning of prices and ultimately causing the disharmony among OPEC and non-OPEC countries that continues today. Cessation of hostilities and peace discussions are taking place in the Middle East, but lack of agreement on oil quotas and prices along with suspicion among oil-producing competitors have kept prices low.

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