Oil prices will likely be stuck in the $65-$70 range this summer, Morgan Stanley says in a new note, tempering its previous forecast for $70 oil with temporary overshoots because of rising U.S. drilling activity and the potential return of Iranian exports.
Although some supportive factors for oil prices are still in place, the recovery of U.S. drilling activity and the return of Iranian oil barrels are two headwinds that are “appearing to take the steam out of this recovery,” Morgan Stanley said, as quoted by Reuters U.S. energy editor David Gaffen.
Oil inventories are still drawing down, and mobility continues to improve, but Iran and higher U.S. drilling activity now appear to likely have more impact on oil prices than Morgan Stanley analysts had initially assumed. Those factors have always been there, in the “known unknowns” territory, but now they could influence the trend in oil prices more, according to Morgan Stanley.
At the end of February, Morgan Stanley was saying that Brent Crude will hit $70 in the third quarter in a sign of “a much improved market.”
Saxo Bank analysts said on Monday they see short-term challenges likely keeping Brent Crude prices rangebound.
“Last week oil posted its worst week in three and while the demand outlook into the second half looks strong, short-term challenges are likely to keep Brent rangebound, currently between $60 and $65,” Saxo Bank said.
Goldman Sachs, for its part, continues to be bullish on oil and anticipates strong demand that would require OPEC+ putting another 2 million barrels per day (bpd) on the market in the third quarter, after the around 2 million bpd that the alliance and Saudi Arabia decided to return between May and July.
Even after the sell-off in oil in mid-March, Goldman Sachs said that the “big breather” was a buying opportunity for oil and continued to forecast Brent hitting $80 per barrel in the summer.
By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com
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