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Oil Update—October 2018

My November oil price range forecast for West Texas Intermediate returns to where it was for July through September. That is to say, I expect that WTI will range between $65.00 and $75.00 per barrel, a decrease of $2.50 from October’s upper and lower range values. While oil prices might deviate from that range for a few days, I expect that WTI prices will fall within that range for most of the month.

Given the ongoing market correction and the murder of Jamal Khashoggi, I expect OPEC and Russia to keep the oil market well supplied in the face of the Iranian sanctions while not letting oil prices fall much further. There are articles suggesting that OPEC might need to cut supplies again because too much oil will soon be available. Yet other articles highlight the lack of surplus capacity suggesting that higher prices are warranted.

A lengthy article titled “Saudi energy minister Al-Falih speaks to TASS on OPEC+, oil prices and Khashoggi” published in the Russian new agency TASS is worth reading.

For those who want to add oil exposure to their portfolios, this market correction might be providing an opportunity. Many of the major integrated oil companies can generate substantial profits in this price environment. As a bonus, many of those same companies pay attractive dividends.

November will be an important month because we will learn how the markets react to the current correction, US election results, fallout from the Khashoggi murder, and Iranian sanctions. As mentioned in prior articles, I am still waiting to see how the trade tensions play out and how Venezuela manages in the months ahead. I continue to expect substantial price uncertainty over the next several months.

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