Deutsche Bank AG analysts believe oil prices generally will be in an overall gradual recovery position going out to 2015, Adam Sieminski, chief energy economist of Deutsche Bank global markets commodities research, said during a Dec. 15 Deloitte LLP Oil & Gas Conference in Houston.
Sieminski forecast West Texas Intermediate crude oil will average $105/bbl on the New York Mercantile Exchange during 2012.
“In 2011, the stock market was driving oil prices,” Sieminski said. “Just recently, we’re starting to see a separation…oil is doing better than the overall market, and I suspect that will be the case going into 2012.”
He noted commodity prices will remain vulnerable while European policy makers work to resolve European sovereign debt issues.
“We do expect Europe will be in a recession in 2012,” Sieminski said of Duetsche Bank analysts.
Global oil demand tends to be driven primarily by economic activity, he said, noting a slowing in China’s economic activity. Yet, Chinese oil demand still continues to grow, and the question is how fast it will grow, Sieminski said.
“We believe China will add about 960,000 b/d of new refinery capacity over the course of 2012 and utilize it,” Sieminski said in a Dec. 9 research note.
“We expect a pick-up in crude demand for direct feedstock as well as crude demand for operational stockpiling purposes,” he added. “China has an operational crude oil stockpile rule of thumb of about 20-25 days of cover. This means that on a full year average, China will likely have to add about 50,000 b/d of additional crude to their operational stockpiles.”
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