Increasing numbers see oil below $100 in 2013, 2014

An increasing number of analysts see oil prices averaging below $100 a barrel over the next two years as doubts about medium-term economic growth outweigh concerns about oil supplies, a Reuters poll found.

By (Reuters)

Published: Wed 27 Jun 2012, 5:38 PM

Last updated: Tue 7 Apr 2015, 11:57 AM

Twelve of 31 respondents in the monthly survey are forecasting Brent crude will average $100 or less in 2013 and nine of 22 analysts expect $100 or less in 2014.

The results represent a swing from the May poll when only five analysts were forecasting prices at or below $100. The lowest forecast for next year is $79.30 from Nomisma. Barclays has the highest forecast for 2013 at $125.

Oil prices have fallen from the year’s peak of $128 for Brent in March to below $92 because of slowing global growth and increased output from Saudi Arabia. Unless prices recover, this year’s average will fall short of last year’s record $110.90 for Brent.

“The euro zone crisis is impacting not just Western economies but also Asian countries including the BRIC nations,” said Nic Brown from Natixis.

The drop in prices has caught many forecasters by surprise and some big commodities trading banks have had to steeply adjust their forecasts.

Citi now sees Brent at $99 next year, revised down from $120 and JP Morgan has cuts its forecast to $104 from $125.

“Barring a shift in the macroeconomic picture into outright global recession, OPEC production changes could skew risks to the upside from current price levels for 3Q 2012 and suggests strong support at $80 per barrel for Brent,” said analysts from JP Morgan, which had seen Q3 prices at $120 only a month ago.

The Reuters poll showed Brent is expected to average $107.80 a barrel this year, down $7.30 from May in the steepest revision over the past year, as 22 analysts cut their forecasts.

Upside risk

Mean average forecasts put Brent at $107.80 in 2012, $105.10 in 2013 and $104.50 in 2014. Brent is put at $102.90 in the third quarter of 2012 and $104.40 in the fourth quarter.

US crude is seen averaging $94.60 in 2012, $96.60 in 2013 and $99 in 2014.

“US oil production continues to soar with the new supplies of shale oil and ongoing imports from Canada, bringing oil supplies well above previous 5-year averages,” said Mark Pervan, from ANZ Research.

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