Last week, a Saudi crown prince dropped a bombshell in an under-the-radar interview that was published in The Economist. He said that the kingdom was looking into spinning off Aramco, or some portion of it, to raise cash.

Comments regarding a potential initial public offering (IPO) from the world’s largest oil company were received with shock and laughter from the global markets.

Shock, coming from the amount of cash an IPO would generate and a fundamental shift from Saudi values. “They’re having to sell part of their business to keep doi...

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