The Best and Worst Oil Price Predictions
Cognitive psychology (not something you hear about much in FUELSNews!) says people suffer from confirmation bias – we tend to find and remember news that aligns with our pre-existing beliefs. The antidote to confirmation bias is reading the opinions of those who disagree with us. This article, then, is for everyone – providing a range of oil predictions from $50 up to $250.
Goldman: US Politics Making Oil Volatile
U.S. political decisions are helping make volatility the new normal in the global oil market and muddying the outlook for prices, according to Goldman Sachs Group Inc. The potential release of crude from America’s emergency supplies, signs that Saudi Arabia is responding to increased pressure from President Donald Trump to pump more, and rising uncertainty over the timing of a potential drop in Iranian exports due to renewed U.S. sanctions means changes in production will be exacerbated by decisions made in the White House, Goldman said.
U.S. Refinery Capacity Unchanged between 2017 and 2018
American refining capacity has remained largely unchanged over the past year, though variable utilization rates have allowed for changes in fuel output. Refining capacity was 18.6 million barrels per day (MMbpd) as of Jan 1, up 1 MMbpd from 2010. Aggregate refining capacity is not expected to rise significantly for the remainder of the year despite new refineries and capacity expansions.
Wood Mac: U.S. Leads Oil Production through 2030, but OPEC Still Swings
U.S. production is expected to continue rising rapidly, climbing above 10 MMbpd this year and reaching 11 MMbpd – ultimately peaking at 11.7 MMbpd by 2030. However, other countries are expected to reduce production over the next few years for a variety of factors, making OPEC an important swing producer even while the U.S. grows its oil influence. Importantly for consumers, the report notes that oil field declines are forcing producers to move to more expensive oil locations, which could raise breakeven levels for producers and keep prices elevated.