Why $80 Crude Oil Is Highly Unlikely In 2018

Robert Boslego - INO.com Contributor - Energies


On January 2, 2018, Byron R. Wien, Vice Chairman in the Private Wealth Solutions group at Blackstone, issued his list of Ten Surprises for 2018. “Byron defines a “surprise” as an event that the average investor would only assign a one out of three chance of taking place but which Byron believes is “probable,” having a better than 50% likelihood of happening.”

Byron’s Ten Surprises for 2018 includes

“The price of West Texas Intermediate Crude moves above $80. The price rises because of continued world growth and unexpected demand from developing markets, together with disappointing hydraulic fracking production, diminished inventories, OPEC discipline and only modest production increases from Russia, Nigeria, Venezuela, Iraq, and Iran.” Continue reading "Why $80 Crude Oil Is Highly Unlikely In 2018"

U.S. Production And Oil Inventories Expected to Rise in 1Q18

Robert Boslego - INO.com Contributor - Energies


According to the Energy Information Administration (EIA), U.S. petroleum inventories (excluding SPR) fell by 14.2 million barrels in the week ending December 15, 2017. They stand about 2 million barrels (mmb) higher than the rising, rolling 5-year average and are about 96 mmb lower than a year ago.

Total U.S. Oil Stocks

Commercial crude stocks fell by 6.5 mmb, and SPR stocks were built by 0.4 mmb last week. Gasoline stocks rose by 1.2 mmb, and distillate stocks gained 0.8 mmb. Primary demand rose by 640,000 b/d to average 19.948 million barrels per day (mmbd).

Crude Production

The EIA estimated (using its model, click here for presentation) that U.S. crude production rose by 9,000 barrels per day to 9.789 mmbd, the highest week in EIA’s database. Production averaged 9.740 mmbd over the past four weeks, up 11.4% v. a year ago. In the year-to-date, crude production averaged 9.313 mmbd, up 6.3% v. last year. Continue reading "U.S. Production And Oil Inventories Expected to Rise in 1Q18"

Oil Price 'Risk Premium' to Play Out Over 4Q17

Robert Boslego - INO.com Contributor - Energies


The Energy Information Administration (EIA), International Energy Agency (IEA) and Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) each released their monthly global oil assessments and projections. They agree that the global oil glut will not be whittled down to anywhere near OPEC’s target of the 5-year OECD average by year-end. Their numbers also imply that global inventories in 1Q18 will build.

The EIA numbers indicate that stocks will be 130 million above the average, just slightly below September’s estimate at end-March.

Global Oil Inventory

OPEC does not project its own production, and it, therefore, does not produce future global inventory levels. But assuming September OPEC production for 4Q17 and 1Q18, stocks will drop by 51 million barrels in 4Q17 and rise by 74 million in 1Q18, a net gain in inventories from September. Continue reading "Oil Price 'Risk Premium' to Play Out Over 4Q17"

Does The Oil Rally Have Legs To Go Higher?

Robert Boslego - INO.com Contributor - Energies


WTI Crude oil prices staged a 23% rally from June 21st through September 25th. The rally appeared to be running out-of-steam as OPEC’s market monitoring committee met September 22nd and made no recommendation about continuing the production limits beyond March next year.

But on Monday, the 25th, there was a surprise announcement by the president of Turkey that he would block the Kurds’ crude oil exports through the pipeline that is on Turkish soil if Kurdistan becomes an independent state. The vote was imminent.

Crude prices rose 3% to the highest rate since May, blowing through technical resistance levels. No doubt there were stops at those levels that were hit, triggering more buying. In the CFTC Commitment of Traders report for the week of September 26th, most of the buying was indeed short-covering by specs and hedgers. A minority of the buying was new long speculative positions. Continue reading "Does The Oil Rally Have Legs To Go Higher?"

Analysis Of Hurricane Harvey Impacts On The U.S. Oil Industry

Robert Boslego - INO.com Contributor - Energies


Information from the Gulf of Mexico is developing each day, and the extent of damage from Harvey to the energy industry’s infrastructure is still largely unknown as of September 5th. I detail below the potential impacts on supply and demand for crude and petroleum products. I have also contrasted them to supply/demand responses to Hurricane Katrina (2005) followed by Hurricane Rita.

Crude Production

The best data show that about 324,000 b/d is shut down in the Gulf of Mexico (GOM). Also, up to 300,000 b/d of inland production may be affected in Eagle Ford.

Hurricane Katrina made its landfall on August 29, 2005, in Southeast Louisiana, not Texas, as a Category 3 hurricane. It caused significant damage to oil and gas industry infrastructure. It was followed by Hurricane Rita, which made landfall on September 24th, also as a Category 3 hurricane.

The initial impact on crude production was about 1.2 million barrels per day (mmbd). GOM production at that time was about 400,000 b/d lower than the most recent estimates.

U.S. Crude Production
Continue reading "Analysis Of Hurricane Harvey Impacts On The U.S. Oil Industry"