Have we seen the bottom of the great oil-price plunge of 2014?
Experts say not yet. But oil prices rose sharply Monday, making their biggest jump in two years: Nymex crude-oil futures rose 4.78 percent, to $69.31 a barrel. And Brent crude, the international benchmark, rose 3 percent, to $72.54. It had been down as low as $67.53 earlier in the day, the lowest it’s been since July 2009.
Oil is down about one-third since June, and late last week the commodity plunged even more precipitously after OPEC announced it would not stem the price drop by ramping up production among its 12 member nations. But some analysts saw Monday’s jump as merely profit-taking after last week’s sell-off.
From The Wall Street Journal:
… many market watchers were skeptical that Monday’s gains signaled that oil prices had reached their bottom, pointing to global supplies that continue to overwhelm demand.
Many investors and analysts believe with OPEC on the sidelines it will take cutbacks by companies in the U.S. and Canada to bring supply and demand in line and pull the market out of its swoon. That day may not come until deep into 2015 or beyond, some analysts say.
“The market clearly got a little overdone to the downside and now it’s coming back up, proof that there will be a response from the shale patch to these low prices,” said John Kilduff, partner at energy hedge fund Again Capital in New York. “Several shale companies are already reporting capital expenditure reductions next year as their profit margins get thinned out.”
On Wall Street, shares of shale energy companies such as Denbury Resources (DNR.N) and Newfield Exploration (NFX.N) took a beating for a second straight session, down about 5 percent each in late afternoon trade.
Data reviewed by Reuters on Monday showed the new low-price environment for oil might have started affecting U.S. shale production, with a 15 percent drop in permits issued for new shale wells in October.