Some of the world’s biggest names in oil trading and analyzing can’t seem to get on the same page when it comes to predicting what will happen next for the volatile commodity.
Some, like Jeffrey Currie of Goldman Sachs and Christyan Malek of JPMorgan, according to the Financial Times, are confident that oil is ready for the next supercycle—a prolonged rise in the price of oil.
And when they refer to this rise, they’re talking $80, or even $100 per barrel.
Others, like oil analyst Arjun Murti who correctly predicted the last $100+ per barrel achievement seen between 2008 and 2014, say that talk of this next supercycle may be a bit hasty.
For Malek, he sees a situation where demand outstrips supply, before “we don’t need it in the years to come.”
The reason for supercycle predictions is simple: stimulus packages, most notably the stimulus package that the U.S. government is expected to roll out, are expected to boost consumption.
And according to Currie, this stimulus will create a “significant, commodity-intensive consumption” as the stimulus package is mostly targeting lower and middle-income households.
“These people don’t drive Teslas,” Currie explained. “They drive SUVs”.
Murti, on the other hand, thinks that if oil demand were to increase by a half a million barrels per day over the next year, it wouldn’t be enough to outstrip supply.
As a point of reference, global oil demand sank roughly 10 million barrels per day as a result of the pandemic in 2020.
If, however, oil demand were to pick up steam by as much as 1.4 million barrels per day, a supercycle may follow.
Veteran trader Pierre Andurand told the Financial Times that the fate of oil prices rests on OPEC—specifically on how much oil they supply.
Standing in the way of the next supercycle, says Andurand, could be Iran returning to the global oil markets, and OPEC’s production in general.
Retired veteran trader—a particularly successful one that made a not-so-small fortune on oil’s last supercycle—Andy Hall, sees the oil market in “terminal decline” the Financial Times writes, and likened any price rally as a dead cat bounce.