Jan Lars Mueller – Executive Director
Thomas Whipple – Editor, Peak Oil Review and Peak Oil News
“U.S. production is about to have a Wile E. Coyote moment where it literally falls off a cliff. One-hundred-and-twenty-thousand barrels, maybe even next month, will drop off…. The supply and demand mismatch will probably come in 2017.” Emad Mostaque, analyst with London-based consultancy Ecstrat
“The message from oil services firms is that shale drillers will not simply be able to turn the tap back on again once prices rise. Halliburton said on its earnings call last month that pressure pumping equipment currently sitting idle was being cannibalized for parts while the stuff still being used was being worked to its limits. And the falling backlog of uncompleted wells will also begin to make an impact.” Liam Denning, Bloomberg View columnist
Exxon Mobil and climate change spin: “This could open up years of litigation and settlements in the same way that tobacco litigation did, also spearheaded by attorneys general. In some ways, the theory is similar — that the public was misled about something dangerous to health. Whether the same smoking guns will emerge, we don’t know yet.”
Brandon L. Garrett, professor at the University of Virginia School of Law
“"The industry is under so much pressure that you need to have a clear plan. You need to balance capital expenditure against production. Our capex in 2015 will be around 30 percent lower than in 2014.” BG Group CEO Helge Lund [Q: how will that impact production in 3-5 years?]
“We are witnessing the total collapse of Venezuela’s economy. A contraction of these proportions might be a unique case in the last 50 years in the world. This never happens. Even Iraq's GDP didn’t fall proportionately during the war.” Alexander Guerrero, economist and head of the firm Techno-Economic.
“Who is the top forecaster in the oil market? The surprising answer is that nobody knows because the accuracy of predictions is never properly tracked and measured after they are made…Weather forecasts have improved enormously over the last 50 years because they have been subjected to rigorous analysis. It is far less obvious that forecasts for oil prices and other financial markets have become any better. If we demand accuracy and accountability from weather forecasters and intelligence specialists, shouldn’t we do the same from oil market forecasters?” John Kemp, energy columnist for Reuters
“China was always seen as the kind of wonder market that was going to grow and need so much LNG that people got somewhat carried away.” Chinese LNG imports are down 3.5% this year, compared with a 10% rise in 2014. Howard Rogers with the Oxford Institute for Energy Studies and a former gas executive at BP
“We went through that four-month window where [natural gas prices] just went sideways and they didn’t stop pumping that whole time. This could be one of those ugly seasons for futures.” Dean Hazelcorn, trader at the Coquest Inc. brokerage in Dallas.
“If we stay at this [sub-$50 oil] price longer, then a third to a quarter of the [US] industry will go bankrupt. More activity could drive production, but that takes money and the US industry doesn’t have it anymore. We don’t believe that US production can grow at $50, $60, or even $70. It will likely take $80 per barrel cash flows to return the US from decline to growth.” Walker Moody, Managing Director of Energy Investment firm Tudor, Pickering, Holt & Co.
““I believe that arctic oil is not for today, and not for tomorrow — maybe for the day after tomorrow,” Fatih Birol, incoming Director of the IEA
In reviewing BP’s latest Statistic Review of World Energy, the big story for world oil last year was obvious: the USA’s third straight record-breaking increase in average annual production. Just over 75% of the net increase in world oil production during 2014 came from the USA; add in Canada and 90% of the total increase came from North America. Throw in Brazil’s first significant increase in three years and you have all the world’s net gain in world oil production accounted for by three non-OPEC players. Production from all other producers combined was flat. So the question for 2015 is straightforward: will we see a repeat of those gains…and the flat-liners?
By Art Berman. Reprinted from ArtBerman.com World oil demand increased by 1.1 million barrels per day in February. This is a potentially important data point that suggests a crude oil price recovery sooner than later. It is also important because it further supports the view that a production surplus and not weak demand is the main cause for the […]
By Robert L. Hirsch. The recent world oil supply/price decline situation looks very much like what happened in 1985-86, when the Saudis dramatically increased oil production, causing world oil prices to crater. That Saudi action was the result of their having acted as swing producer in OPEC, which under those circumstances caused a progressive loss […]
A National Energy Program – A White Paper on Achieving Energy Independence and National Transformation. By Lawrence Klaus. Revised and Updated, January 2015. In a recent post, we marked the 40th anniversary of the 1973 Oil Embargo–an event that has had profound economic and geopolitical aftershocks for the United States. The embargo itself lasted […]
New York oil lost 35 cents last week closing at $40.39 a barrel after having dipped just before settlement to $38.99, the lowest price since August. In London Brent closed up 1.1 percent for the week at $44.66. Prices were weaker in the US as nationwide crude stocks climbed by 252,000 barrels, but stocks at Cushing, Ok storage depot rose by 1.8 million barrels. The US rig count was down by ten last week, after a two-rig increase the week before. Russia and the Saudis continue to pump at or near maximum capacity. Most brokers are expecting that Iran will be back into the markets in the first quarter of 2016 at about 500,000 b/d day to start.
Crude oil prices fell by 8 percent in New York and London last week, closing at $40.74 and $43.61 respectively. Continued growth in global crude stocks and uncertain economic outlooks for China and the US are still seen as the cause of the price slump. Short covering by speculators who believed we had already reached the bottom of the slump and a strong US dollar contributed to the decline. On Friday the IEA reported that at the end of September global crude stocks were at a new high of at least 3 billion barrels and growing. The Agency is not able to track stocks in smaller countries so actual storage is somewhat higher.
After a bounce last Tuesday, oil prices continued to fall closing on Friday at $44.29 in New York and $47.42 in London, down 4.9 percent and 4.3 percent for the week respectively. While oversupply and weak demand remains the basis for the price decline, the jump in US employment with the prospects of higher interest rates and a stronger dollar helped with the decline on Friday. The Wall Street Journal’s Dollar index was recently at its highest level in 13 years against the euro, yen and other currencies.
It was a volatile week with oil prices falling on Monday and Tuesday, surging 6 percent on Wednesday and then stabilizing on Thursday and Friday. When it was over, prices were up for the week about 4.5 percent to $46.59 in New York and 3.3 percent to $49.56 in London. Crude prices have been more volatile this year than anytime since the 2008 crisis. Some of the large percentage moves we are seeing, however, are due to the relatively low prices as compared to recent years. The move on Thursday was generally assessed as being caused by computer trading signals coupled with a slightly bullish weekly stocks report. The report showed decreases in oil product stocks and crude in storage at Cushing, Okla. while overall US crude inventories continued to climb. On Friday another drop in the US oil-rig count was reported which led to a small price jump at the end of the day.