Crude Awakening: Will Oil Prices Surge Past $95 Before Year-End?

James Hyerczyk
Published: Jul 2, 2024, 18:22 GMT+00:00

Key Points:

  • Crude Supply: OPEC+ production adjustments shape market outlook
  • Global Oil Demand: Diverging forecasts create market uncertainty
  • Price Projections: Potential for Brent crude to test $95 barrier
  • Economic Factors: China's recovery crucial to oil demand outlook
  • Geopolitical Risks: Middle East tensions could disrupt supply forecast
Crude Oil News Today

Market Forces and Price Projections

As we enter the second half of 2024, the crude oil market is showing signs of renewed vigor. Recent developments suggest a potential shift from the earlier bearish sentiment, with Brent crude prices now expected to potentially surpass the previously forecasted $80-$85 per barrel range. This revised outlook for the remainder of the year is influenced by a combination of supply adjustments, anticipated demand growth, and geopolitical factors.

Daily Brent Crude Oil

Supply-Side Considerations

OPEC+ continues to play a pivotal role in shaping market conditions. The group’s commitment to restricting production until benchmark crude prices consistently exceed $90 per barrel provides a strong price support mechanism. This strategy, coupled with the flexibility to delay scheduled output increases, indicates a more bullish supply outlook than previously anticipated. Meanwhile, U.S. crude oil production growth is expected to continue, albeit at a measured pace due to ongoing capital discipline among producers.

Demand Expectations and Economic Factors

The market’s focus has shifted towards potential demand growth in the latter half of 2024. Expectations of a significant depletion in crude and fuel inventories during the third quarter are driving bullish sentiment. This outlook is pinned on hopes of robust U.S. gasoline consumption during the summer driving season and an acceleration of crude buying in China after a subdued first half of the year. However, the disparity in demand forecasts between OPEC and the International Energy Agency continues to inject an element of uncertainty into the market.

Weekly Brent Crude Oil

Seasonal and Geopolitical Influences

Seasonal factors are expected to play a crucial role in supporting oil prices. The peak season for oil consumption in Middle Eastern power stations, combined with the summer driving season in the United States, is anticipated to boost demand significantly. Additionally, geopolitical tensions, particularly in the Middle East, are introducing a risk premium to oil prices. The ongoing conflict between Israel and Hezbollah, with the potential to draw in other regional players, raises concerns about supply disruptions.

Investor Sentiment and Market Implications

Recent weeks have seen a notable shift in investor sentiment, with hedge funds and money managers increasing their positions in petroleum futures and options. This trend indicates growing confidence in the market’s bullish potential. For consumers, this evolving outlook suggests the possibility of higher gasoline prices, potentially contributing to inflationary pressures. Businesses reliant on oil-based inputs may need to prepare for increased costs.


In conclusion, the crude oil market appears poised for a potentially stronger performance through the end of 2024 than earlier forecasts suggested. While risks remain, including economic uncertainties and geopolitical tensions, the combination of controlled supply, anticipated demand growth, and investor optimism points towards a more bullish scenario. Market participants should remain vigilant, as the interplay between OPEC+ decisions, global economic performance, and geopolitical developments could rapidly alter this outlook.

About the Author

James is a Florida-based technical analyst, market researcher, educator and trader with 35+ years of experience. He is an expert in the area of patterns, price and time analysis as it applies to futures, Forex, and stocks.

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