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Dan Dicker

Dan Dicker

Dan Dicker is a 25 year veteran of the New York Mercantile Exchange where he traded crude oil, natural gas, unleaded gasoline and heating oil…

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Oil Prices And Producers Trapped In Limbo

Crude oil has hovered near $60 a barrel since May, a useless price for investors. This uneasy equilibrium needs to be broken before any good can be done trading in the energy space. My thoughts have been that oil must drop back down towards the lows established earlier this year, but indeed, oil has shown amazing resilience to the fundamentals driving it down. But until it moves decisively one way or the other, there’s nothing worth trading.

Oil has seemed to have plenty of reasons to drop back towards $50 a barrel, since rallying from lows in the $40’s in March. Despite the large drop in Capex among the US E+P’s and the laying down of more than a thousand rigs, all projections for US oil production are still much higher than in 2014, in fact nearly 1.1 million barrels a day higher. The shale players, by concentrating on their core drill sites, have actually increased production in the short run. That has combined with a continued fight among OPEC members and particularly Saudi Arabia for market share and zero desire to put quota limits on OPEC production. Add that to the possibility of more Iranian oil and the oncoming production from Libya, and the worldwide glut in oil seems clearly destined to only get worse.

But financial players are still willing to bet on oil barrels. In the short term, demand has rebounded a bit because of low prices, some production seems to be dropping in small specific areas of the Bakken and China has shown an almost…

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