Even with Wednesday’s surge, oil futures still languish below $38 per barrel and the United States Oil Fund (NYSEArca: USO), which tracks West Texas Intermediate crude oil futures, is still lower by nearly 45% this year.
A significant part of oil’s problems this year is attributable to the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) refusing to cut production in an effort to stem slumping prices. However, OPEC still has plenty of skin in the game, hence the cartel’s bullish prediction on crude prices.
OPEC has kept up production to pressure high-cost rivals, such as the developing U.S. shale oil producers. The International Energy Agency expects it will take several years before OPEC can effectively price out high-cost producers. [Oil ETFs Face World-Record Supply Glut]
IEA believes supplies outside of OPEC will dip next year by the most since 1992 as cheap crude helps price out costlier producers, such as the U.S. shale oil industry.
“OPEC early Wednesday released its closely watched World Oil Outlook, saying it expects the price of its basket of crude to rise to $70 a barrel in 2020 and to $95 a barrel in 2040,” report Sara Sjolin and Jenny Hsu for MarketWatch.