Lack of Institutional Interest Could be a Sign to Buy Energy Stocks

The Energy Select Sector SPDR (NYSEArca: XLE) and the iShares Global Energy ETF (NYSEArca: IXC) are each down more than 11% over the past month as oil equities have continually followed the commodity lower.

Still, some investors are eagerly search for a bottom in the energy sector and looking for any sign that capitulation has arrived. That could be a sign that even with crude futures residing well-below breakeven levels for many producers, energy stocks might not be far from capitulation. oil experts project crude prices will continue to dip to levels where many shale producers will be unable to generate a profit, reports Patti Domm for CNBC.

According to a recent CNBC oil survey, the majority of investors and analysts believe WTI will slide to between $30 and $40 per barrel this fall, with about 62% of respondents anticipating the WTI crude to trade between the range and stay low toward the end of the year,

Additionally, 43% of respondents believe the breakeven price for the U.S. shale industry is about $45 to $55 per barrel, and 24% estimate the breakeven level at $55 to $65. [Breakeven Becomes an Oil Headwind]

Although it seems counter-intuitive, a lack of institutional support for energy stocks could be another sign sellers are growing tired.