The Energy Select Sector SPDR (NYSEArca: XLE), the largest equity-based ETF, and rival cap-weighted energy ETFs are extending their recent comebacks that are lifting the funds to comeback kids from bear market status.
XLE is up more than 9% this month and is close to trading above its 200-day moving average for the first time since early in the second quarter. The big-name energy ETF is now down just 9% year-to-date after previously sporting year-to-date losses of closer to 20%.
Current OPEC compliance with production cut plans remains above their historical average, and it usually takes between two to three quarters for inventories to normalize after the cuts. The challenge for energy equities is that some oil market observers see more declines coming for crude. Oil traders are concerned over how fast U.S. shale oil producers will increase production to capture the rising prices.
“U.S. production is highly responsive to market conditions,” reports ETF Daily News. “Therefore, U.S. producers are pulling in their horns in face of prices under $60. That’s more fuel for a price surge. So, when you get down to it, OPEC has a secret weapon all right. And that’s the fact that U.S. oil production is way too price-sensitive for the good of U.S. oil consumers.”