Oil Seen Rising on Speculation It Fell Too Fast, Survey Says

Jan 10, 2014 2:53 pm ET

(Updates with prices in fifth paragraph.)

Jan. 10 (Bloomberg) -- West Texas Intermediate crude futures may rise next week on speculation that recent declines were too fast, a Bloomberg survey showed.

Seventeen of 37 analysts, or 46 percent, forecast WTI futures will rise through Jan. 17. Eight respondents, or 22 percent, predicted a drop, and 12 said prices will be little changed. Last week, 59 percent said they would fall.

Futures have declined in seven of the past eight days and settled at an eight-month low yesterday. They reached $100.32 on Dec. 27, a two-month high. The 14-day relative strength index for front-month WTI futures, a technical indicator used by some traders to predict market direction, slid to a two-month low, signaling that prices may be poised to rally.

“We are so oversold that the market may attempt a rally,” said Phil Flynn, senior market analyst at the Price Futures Group in Chicago.

WTI dropped $1.24, or 1.3 percent, to $92.72 a barrel this week on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Futures had tumbled 8.6 percent in the previous eight days, ending yesterday at the lowest level since May 1.

The RSI decreased to 30.1 yesterday, the lowest level since Nov. 5, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. An RSI reading below 30 can signal that price drops have been excessive. The reading rose to 36.2 today.

Crude stockpiles decreased 2.68 million barrels to 357.9 million barrels in the seven days ended Jan. 3, the lowest level since Sept. 13, the Energy Information Administration said on Jan. 8. It was the sixth consecutive decline. Companies in Gulf Coast states typically minimize supplies at the end of the year to reduce local taxes.

The oil survey has correctly predicted the direction of futures 50 percent of the time since its start in April 2004.

     Bloomberg’s survey of oil analysts and traders, conducted
each Thursday, asks for an assessment of whether crude oil
futures are likely to rise, fall or remain neutral in the coming
week. The results were:

                    RISE      NEUTRAL    FALL
                      17         12        8

--With assistance from Ben Sharples in Melbourne, Tsuyoshi Inajima in Tokyo, Sarah Chen in Beijing, Jing Yang in Shanghai, Ann Koh, Winnie Zhu, Ramsey Al-Rikabi and Yee Kai Pin in Singapore and Grant Smith in London. Editors: Margot Habiby, Charlotte Porter