April 16, 2020

Thoughts On Oil

During this Covid-19 pandemic, financial markets have been destroyed, only to be propped back up again by the Fed. Except oil.

President Trump, the Fed, Larry Kudlow, and others are doing their best at arm-twisting the public and the markets into a false reality. Oil is the one market where jawboning does not work. In other words, you can't "talk" up the price of oil.

Earlier this year Saudi Arabia and Russia decided to flood the oil market with product in an effort to drive US shale producers into bankruptcy. Add to that the Covid-19 pandemic and you have oil where it is right now.

The problem is: Everyone's in pain at $20 a barrel, including Saudi Arabia and Russia!

As of today, there is a complete collapse in global oil demand. No one can drive or work. Oil producing countries will cut production to boost the price. However, we're still oversupplied by 5 to 10mm barrels per day!

Most producers are putting their crude into every storage facility available, including floating storage.

How long until they run out of storage space? What happens once global storage completely fills up?

I think the market right now is pretty optimistic about an oil recovery. But, demand will not normalize before year-end.

How low can oil prices go?

Once the true oversupplied is realized, the price will go down a lot. However, shutdowns due to Covid-19 are still far from over.

There is no clear low for oil prices.

A few things are certain:

  • We're seeing a complete collapse in global oil demand.
  • Oil producing countries will run massive deficits, to cut production only worsens their position.
  • Once the true oversupplied is realized, the oil price will go down a lot.
  • The Majors will swallow up US shale producers for pennies on the dollar.