Breaking News
Get Actionable Insights with InvestingPro+: Start 7 Day FREE Trial Register here
Investing Pro 0
Ad-Free Version. Upgrade your experience. Save up to 40% More details

The 2021 Oil Price Rally Is Far From Over

By (Tsvetana Paraskova)CommoditiesOct 21, 2021 12:14AM ET
The 2021 Oil Price Rally Is Far From Over
By (Tsvetana Paraskova)   |  Oct 21, 2021 12:14AM ET
Saved. See Saved Items.
This article has already been saved in your Saved Items
  • The oil price rally is far from over, with inventory drawdowns across the world suggesting the market is far from being balanced
  • OPEC+ appears in no rush to add supply to markets and appears to be producing below its self-imposed production ceiling
  • The steepest 12-month Brent backwardation since 2013 is yet another bullish indicator for oil prices

Even after hitting the highest levels in several years in recent days, oil prices have further room to rise this winter. At least short-term market fundamentals suggest so, analysts say. Inventories around the world have fallen to below the pre-pandemic five-year average as stocks are depleting, with demand bouncing back amid a weaker supply response from producers. The energy crunch in Europe and Asia and record-high natural gas and coal prices add more arguments to the bullish case for oil in coming months as a switch from gas to oil products such as fuel oil and diesel, especially in Asia, is already underway.

The structure of the oil futures curve a year from now also points to a tight market and headroom for higher crude prices.

Stocks Draw As Demand Rebounds

On the demand side, recovering economies and mobility have boosted global oil demand in recent months, leading to inventory drawdowns that have reduced global stocks to below recent averages.

In both the United States and the OECD developed economies as a whole, commercial oil stocks have dropped to below pre-COVID five-year averages after more than reversing the huge builds from the spring and summer last year, Reuters market analyst John Kemp notes.

As of the latest reporting week, U.S. commercial crude oil inventories stood at 427 million barrels, around 6 percent below the five-year average for this time of year. Gasoline inventories were about 2 percent below the five-year average, distillate fuel inventories were 9 percent lower, while propane/propylene inventories were a massive 21 percent below the five-year average for this time of year, the latest EIA data showed.

In OECD, commercial stocks in August were 162 million barrels below the pre-COVID five-year average, the International Energy Agency (IEA) said in its latest monthly report last week. Preliminary data for the U.S., Europe, and Japan show on-land industry stocks fell by a further 23 million barrels in September.

Globally, implied Q3 refined product balances “show the largest draw in eight years, which explains the strong increase in refinery margins in September despite significantly higher crude prices,” said the IEA.

The energy crisis in Europe and Asia could additionally boost global oil demand by 500,000 barrels per day (bpd) compared to a “normal” market without a natural gas and coal crunch, the agency noted, raising its 2021 and 2022 global oil demand forecasts.

Supply Lags Demand As OPEC+ Keeps Market Tight

While demand has rebounded despite the summer COVID flare-ups in the U.S. and Asia, supply additions to the oil market have been lagging behind the pace of growing demand.

First, it was Hurricane Ida that limited U.S. oil supply from the Gulf of Mexico from the end of August through most of September. Supply will not recover to its full capacity until early next year, as a Shell-operated platform will remain offline until the end of 2021.

At the same time, the OPEC+ group continues to keep the market tight, adding just 400,000 bpd each month to its overall supply. That’s despite calls from the U.S. and other consuming nations to open the taps and tame the high oil prices, and despite the energy crisis which has forced utilities to fire up oil-fueled power generation amid record-high natural gas prices, boosting demand for oil products.

OPEC+ leaders point to expected oversupply next year and to the need to look beyond the next two months in their decision to continue to reverse only 400,000 bpd per month of their cuts.

Saudi Energy Minister, Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman, last week basically ruled out the option that the alliance would respond to the oil price rally by adding more supply than planned.

“We should look way beyond the tip of our noses. Because if you do, and take ’22 into account, you will end up by end of ’22 with a huge amount of overstocks,” he said on Thursday.

Moreover, output figures point to the fact that OPEC+ is actually pumping well below its collective production ceiling. As per Bloomberg’s estimates, if all members of the alliance stuck to their respective production ceilings in September, the overall production of the group would have been 747,000 bpd higher than what it was.

It looks like OPEC+ is not too worried about demand destruction at $85 oil, at least not for now. The group’s leaders stress the importance of a longer-term vision and stability on the market, expecting increased supply in 2022 from both their own wells and from the U.S. shale patch, which appears to be maintaining its capex discipline even at $80 oil.

‘Blowout’ Backwardation Points To Even Higher Oil Prices

At the end of 2021, however, supply remains tight, while backwardation—a key indicator of a tightening market—between the December 2021 Brent contract and the December 2022 contract has jumped to above $8 per barrel in recent days. This is the steepest 12-month Brent backwardation since 2013, according to Refinitiv Eikon data cited by Reuters.

“Energy crunch is carving out an USD80/b oil floor,” Japanese MUFG Bank said in its Oil Market Weekly report last week.

“The blowout in Brent crude timespreads in recent trading days signals that the pathway [to] even higher oil prices remains firm,” the bank’s research team wrote.

Original Post

The 2021 Oil Price Rally Is Far From Over

Related Articles

Andy Hecht
Oil Correction: An Opportunity For 2022 By Andy Hecht - Dec 03, 2021 7

This article was written exclusively for The stairs higher and an elevator lower The crude oil trend remains higher - Higher lows on the horizon US energy policy...

Craig Erlam
Oil Rebounds, Gold Takes A Bath By Craig Erlam - Dec 03, 2021

It’s been another volatile session in the oil markets as OPEC+ met to decide on output targets for January. As per the previous agreement, the group had intended to increase...

The 2021 Oil Price Rally Is Far From Over

Add a Comment

Comment Guidelines

We encourage you to use comments to engage with other users, share your perspective and ask questions of authors and each other. However, in order to maintain the high level of discourse we’ve all come to value and expect, please keep the following criteria in mind:  

  •            Enrich the conversation, don’t trash it.

  •           Stay focused and on track. Only post material that’s relevant to the topic being discussed. 

  •           Be respectful. Even negative opinions can be framed positively and diplomatically. Avoid profanity, slander or personal attacks directed at an author or another user. Racism, sexism and other forms of discrimination will not be tolerated.

  • Use standard writing style. Include punctuation and upper and lower cases. Comments that are written in all caps and contain excessive use of symbols will be removed.
  • NOTE: Spam and/or promotional messages and comments containing links will be removed. Phone numbers, email addresses, links to personal or business websites, Skype/Telegram/WhatsApp etc. addresses (including links to groups) will also be removed; self-promotional material or business-related solicitations or PR (ie, contact me for signals/advice etc.), and/or any other comment that contains personal contact specifcs or advertising will be removed as well. In addition, any of the above-mentioned violations may result in suspension of your account.
  • Doxxing. We do not allow any sharing of private or personal contact or other information about any individual or organization. This will result in immediate suspension of the commentor and his or her account.
  • Don’t monopolize the conversation. We appreciate passion and conviction, but we also strongly believe in giving everyone a chance to air their point of view. Therefore, in addition to civil interaction, we expect commenters to offer their opinions succinctly and thoughtfully, but not so repeatedly that others are annoyed or offended. If we receive complaints about individuals who take over a thread or forum, we reserve the right to ban them from the site, without recourse.
  • Only English comments will be allowed.

Perpetrators of spam or abuse will be deleted from the site and prohibited from future registration at’s discretion.

Write your thoughts here
Are you sure you want to delete this chart?
Post also to:
Replace the attached chart with a new chart ?
Your ability to comment is currently suspended due to negative user reports. Your status will be reviewed by our moderators.
Please wait a minute before you try to comment again.
Thanks for your comment. Please note that all comments are pending until approved by our moderators. It may therefore take some time before it appears on our website.
Comments (2)
NTEGE RONALD Oct 21, 2021 3:59AM ET
Saved. See Saved Items.
This comment has already been saved in your Saved Items
I wanna talk to you, please
NTEGE RONALD Oct 21, 2021 3:59AM ET
Saved. See Saved Items.
This comment has already been saved in your Saved Items
Are you sure you want to delete this chart?
Replace the attached chart with a new chart ?
Your ability to comment is currently suspended due to negative user reports. Your status will be reviewed by our moderators.
Please wait a minute before you try to comment again.
Add Chart to Comment
Confirm Block

Are you sure you want to block %USER_NAME%?

By doing so, you and %USER_NAME% will not be able to see any of each other's's posts.

%USER_NAME% was successfully added to your Block List

Since you’ve just unblocked this person, you must wait 48 hours before renewing the block.

Report this comment

I feel that this comment is:

Comment flagged

Thank You!

Your report has been sent to our moderators for review
Disclaimer: Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. All CFDs (stocks, indexes, futures) and Forex prices are not provided by exchanges but rather by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual market price, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Therefore Fusion Media doesn`t bear any responsibility for any trading losses you might incur as a result of using this data.

Fusion Media or anyone involved with Fusion Media will not accept any liability for loss or damage as a result of reliance on the information including data, quotes, charts and buy/sell signals contained within this website. Please be fully informed regarding the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, it is one of the riskiest investment forms possible.
Continue with Google
Sign up with Email