Oil: No reaction to the new situation in the Middle East
Opinion : Bearish under 58.25
Target price : 53
While the resurgence of geopolitical frictions in the Middle East is driven by the oil markets, it must be noted that operators do not seem to be deciding to move away from their waiting position. This lack of initiative implies a lateralisation of prices. More prosaically, the market is still in need of a powerful catalyst to get itself up and running.
On the geopolitical front, observers’s attention is now focused on North Syrian territory since the launch of the “Fountain of Peace” operation by Turkey on 9 October, which aims to achieve a buffer zone of 30 kilometres deep at its dream border. If the Turkish offensive is followed closely, and for many reasons since it disrupts regional balances (particularly in favour of Damascus), it is important not to underestimate other theories of operation where tensions remain high. This is particularly the case for the opposition of Saudi Arabia and Iran through its regional proxies in Yemen. This is evidenced by the latest incident of an Iranian tanker in the Red Sea, allegedly targeted by two missiles.
On the fundamentals side, operators no longer know where to start. The latter demonstrate the difference between the decline in macroeconomic indicators and the more or less significant advances on the Sino-American trade agreement and Brexit. Indeed, the decline in manufacturing and service ISMs, followed this week by the surprise contraction in US consumption, tends to paint a bleak picture of the direction of oil demand. In contrast, the agreement in principle reached between Pékin and Washington and the possible Brexit pilogue raise hopes for the global economic outlook.
It is within this framework that the IEA (International Energy Agency) and the EIA (American Department of Energy), like OPEC, have once again revised their growth estimates for global crude oil demand for 2020. Also under investor scrutiny, U.S. production is not slowing despite the decline in new drilling and is now at a record 12.6 million barrels per day.
Graphically, in units of weekly time, there are no improvements to report on the underlying trend, which remains downward as indicated by the direction of the various moving averages. The prices are once again testing a major support located at 58 USD, which buyers will have to keep. Its rupture would effectively lead to a further decline towards 53 USD.