The Coming Economic Collapse: How You Can Thrive When Oil Costs $200 a Barrel

ISBN: 0446579785
ISBN 13: 9780446579780
By: Stephen Leeb Glen C. Strathy

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About this book

Economist Stephen Leeb shows how surging oil prices will contribute to a huge economic collapse by soaring to over $100 a barrel - and tells how you can avoid the pitfalls of the upcoming crisis.

Reader's Thoughts


Pretty interesting to read this over 5 years after it was written and realize his hypothesis about oil (at least over $100 a barrel) has happened. Overall - thought provoking.


It does a good job of explaining in simple terms what the problem of "peak oil" is and why it will happen. It then goes on to predict it will happen before the end of this decade...


This is based on the audio download from [].Narrated by: Brian EmersonA thoughtful approach to the explanation as to why oil will be in short supply and how the world will react to it. According to the author, the coming oil crisis will not be a temporary blip like that of the 1970s...this one will be ongoing and life altering.I particularly liked, this example highlighting the urgency for finding an new energy source. Think of a granary. Your neighbor owns it. You get all your food from them. You know that the silo is never able to be filled. More is going out than going in. You know they will run out at some point. Wouldn't you look for another source of food? Now imagine the neighbor does not like your family. Wouldn't looking for another source of food be a top priority? This put it in perspective for me.As for how to make money in this crisis...well that's one man's opinion. I'm not an expert in investments but I'll be monitoring his choices.


April 2010 This s a pathetically bad book. The author has a hysterical style of writing. Mr. Chicken little. The author thinks the next decade will be a near perfect repeat of the 1970's, and what worked then will work in the next decade. And what didn't work in the 70's will be a failure once again. Myself, I believe in peak oil; I have no doubt we'll see $10 a gallon gas before too many years. But half the oil used in the US is used by transportation.Most in personal driving around. This isn't necessary for the economy to prosper. When gas goes to $10, my bet is that people will use a lot less.And get rid of the gas guzzlers they currently like.And public transportation will be used a lot more.\ The book was written in 2006, before the housing crisis.Page 179, the author says: "we think real estate still has merit as an investment, just as it did in the 1970s. The trigger that could pop the real estate bubble would be higher interest rates..." Less than 2 years from meltdown and he didn't have a clue aboutthe rotten lending or the prime slime borrowers. Gold did well in the 70's, so it's certain to do well in the next decade. He has no imagination at all.The future will be a simplistic repeat of the past.


This book offers insight into the economy and how it is affected by the price of oil. With finance at its core, the book offers some investment strategies taylored for a bad economy. However, one must exercise caution if considering some of the investment strategies, as no one, including the well meaning author, can accurately predict future events.

Mitro Pietro

Exellent and objective analysis of energy economics from 2005 (published in 2006), which have proven to be disturbingly accurate. Criticisms of this book, based on the investment advice it gives, are overdone, as investment strategies comprise very little of the book, itself. The book is more about the social and economic consequences of a high global demand for oil and an oil supply that is declining.


This book was written in Feb 2006 and I am just now reading it. Had I read it (and believed it) then, I would have made a lot of money over the past few years on his recommendations. Question now is whether there is still any validity to the strategies given where we have come in last 24 months. (Gold $400->$1000, Oil $60->$110, etc.)I personally agree with many of his general thoeries:1.) We are at a supply limit on crude oil. Growth in this environment is going to be down right impossible.2.) Consequently, serious inflation (ala the 1970's) is coming our way.3.) The Fed will lack the ability and wherewithal to affect monetary policy to fight the inflation. Because the limited supply of the products we need to sustain, monetary policy alont can't correct it, without a serious economic downturn. Fed's January actions indicate that they care much less about inflation than growth any way.Leeb plays all of it to the extreme and comes up with some dire consequences of our ways. We will all end up farming our back 40 acres to survive?Things I strongly disagree with him is that governments should allow market conditions to take full hold even if that means paying $12 a gallon for gasoline. What Leeb calls tax breaks for oil companies are ridiculous misunderstandings of the business and why those tax benefits are in the code.1.) Depeletion -> No other industry is producing from reservoirs (cash streams) that are 10-35% less every year. 2.) Deduction of Drilling Costs -> You CAN NOT treat drilling costs like normal equipment. They are sunk costs. Wihtout the abilility to deduct that as an expense would absolutely KILL drilling in this country. He supports using these taxes to develop alternative energy sources, his biggest pet project being wind. LEEB wake up! The wind does not blow all the time. The sun does not shine all of the time. These are ineffcient methods for energy. Fossil fuel use is here to stay and must be a part of a reliable energy poilcy going forward. Besides how hypocritical to state on one hand that we should not be "subsidizing" fossil fuel usage while at the same time knowing full well that wind turbines simple don't make economic sense without federal tax breaks and subsidies. Why? Because electrical generation plants can't depend on them. They HAVE to have a coal/natural gas back up.All said, this is an eye opening book and he nailed a lot of precictions (a big whiff on real estate) and they probably came true a lot earlier than even he thought. I will most likely change my personal portfolio based on a lot of his thoughts.


Wish I had read this two years ago. It is scary how on the money this guy was. Hopefully that changes real soon.

D.R. Pitcock

I enjoyed the apocalyptic "what ifs" in the book. It sets your mind thinking about what would happen if I had to pay $15.00 a gallon for gas and under what circumstances. It isn't very prescient but is a good, measured approach to a chaotic world were it's a bit like a Mad Max movie.


Brief overview and insights on the important of energy and its replacement that covers its important to economy, investment and personal contribution and planning.

Carter Powers

Great book for outlining what's currently happening with oil prices. This guy predicted it coming for the last 10 years. The book was written in 2006 when oil was $30 a barrel.


This is the strangest investment book I've ever read. The authors spend about 170 pages (out of 196) explaining why the economy may collapse. The premise is that Peak Oil Theory is correct, that the supply of cheap oil is dwindling, and as a result, society as we know it may change drastically.The weird part is that after each gloom-and-doom scenario they paint, the authors provide a glimpse of hope. For example, they mention that the shortage of cheap oil may cause a new age of barbarism and lawlessness that will result in a lot of people being killed as a relatively small number of strong clever people take what they need to survive... but we'll show you how to profit from it!It's not quite humorous, but it comes close. The investment advice seems solid. After they spend 170 pages explaining how they were right about the price of oil (predicting further that it could hit $100 by the end of the decade, which of course it has) and how energy affects everything and which historical trends to learn from, and so on, I'm inclined to trust their advice.So when society crumbles and we all go back to living a pastoral existence on an Amish-style farm near a small town, I'll be able to sleep on a huge pile of hundred dollar bills.


not a good prognosis if things don't change in regards to leadership and their priorities


This book is awesome. No one can say we haven't been warned...

Derek Barnes

You'd think a book with this title would be pretty pessimistic. However, his economic forecast written in 2006 is, though accurate, shockingly not pessimistic ENOUGH!!! He laid out the dangers of housing inflation, but predicted that it couldn't possibly deflate because the prospect was just too horrendous to contemplate. I've got his Game Over book in my hands right now and looking forward to reading his thoughts of the 2008 crash aftermath.

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