A monthly report of the International Energy Agency, called the Oil Market Report, has said crude oil would trade within the range of $60 to $70 per barrel this year.
In its January edition of the OMR, IEA revealed that, a survey of forecasters conducted by Reuters showed that in the current year, the price of Brent Crude, which is the international benchmark, would range between $60 and $70 per barrel.
According to the agency, “If OPEC countries plus their non-OPEC supporters maintain compliance then the market is likely to balance for the year as a whole with the first half in a modest surplus and the second half in a modest deficit. This scenario, or something similar to it, presumably lies behind the assumption by forecasters surveyed by Reuters that Brent will trade in a $60-$70/bbl range in 2018. Whether or not the recent price rise has run out of steam and seventy really is plenty remains to be seen.”
Crude oil prices last Thursday hit their highest since December 2014 with Brent futures settling at $71.12/bbl, which is above the three-year high of $70.37 reached on January 15, 2018. US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude oil futures climbed to $66.22/bbl in early trading, also the highest level since early December 2014.
Offering explanation on the rising oil prices, IEA pointed out that benchmark crude prices climbed to a three-year high in early January, owing to falling stocks, supply issues in the North Sea and Libya, and geopolitical tensions.