July 22 (Reuters) – Supply and demand dynamics in the oil market point to a slow rise in prices over the next few months, Barclays said on Thursday, as it increased its oil price forecast for 2021 from $ 3 to $ 5 per barrel.
Expectations that oil stocks will be tight as economies recover pushed oil prices higher on Thursday, with benchmark Brent prices hitting around $ 72.86 a barrel.
“Oil prices could reach $ 100 a barrel over the next few months if OPEC + delays too long in bringing back supplies, given the relatively inelastic non-OPEC + supply response,” Barclays said in a note.
“But we doubt that the group sees it as an optimal result given the potential for significant erosion of demand and political considerations,” he added.
The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and its allies, a group known as OPEC +, has agreed to increase oil supplies from August by 400,000 barrels per day (bpd) each month until at the end of the year. Read more
Although he expects cooperation between OPEC + members to continue, Barclays said he does not expect OPEC + to be able to limit supply growth to 400,000 bpd. per month beyond 2021 if Iranian supplies increase significantly on a possible nuclear deal.
The British bank sees Brent crude prices averaging $ 69 a barrel this year, up from $ 66 previously, and $ 68 in 2022 pending a larger surplus.
US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude prices are expected to average $ 67 per barrel this year, up from $ 62 previously, and average $ 65 next year.
Barclays said if the spread of the coronavirus variants posed a risk to the pace of the recovery in demand, its impact would be much less than at the start of the year, mainly due to vaccinations.
“A scenario in which a slower recovery in demand threatens to derail progress in inventory normalization could be handled by OPEC + slowing its decline.”
Reporting by Nakul Iyer and Swati Verma in Bengaluru Editing by Mark Potter
Our standards: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.
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