Oil price -International Monetary Fund

We can all have our negative views of some of these Global Entities like the IMF and the World Bank . And I have my share. However, that is not to say that some of their in dept studies are not worth reading. Some highly  qualified people spend a lot of time pouring over the economics of many countries and provide valuable insight and direction.

In the last Regional Report of the Middle East and Central Asia by the IMF , published this month , it becomes obvious that it is finally getting through to everybody that this lower oil price will be around for a while.  On page 17 of the report the authors address this in what perhaps is the most succinct I have seen for a while.  I quote:

‘The New Environment:

Lower Oil Prices Oil prices fell dramatically in the second half of 2014, and again this summer. Between July 2014 and January 2015, oil prices dropped from about $110 a barrel to less than $50 a barrel. They have remained volatile since then, initially rebounding to about $65 a barrel in the spring, but then falling back below $50 a barrel amid resilient supply and still weak demand (Figure 1.1). Supply-side forces have contributed significantly to this new environment of lower oil prices. The shale revolution, the decision by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) to protect its market share, and the anticipated lifting of sanctions on Iran are all putting downward pressure on prices. Persistently weak global growth has also contributed to lower oil prices from the demand side, most recently amid concerns over slowing growth in China and emerging market vulnerabilities more generally (Husain and others 2015).

Markets expect oil prices to increase modestly over the medium term, but without recovering to the 2014 peaks. The 2015 oil price is expected to be $52 a barrel, increasing gradually to about $63 by 2020.2 However, considerable uncertainty surrounds these figures. Risks to global growth remain tilted to the downside, not least because of the recent bout of financial market and exchange rate volatility. It is unclear how quickly Iran can ramp up production Chapter 5), while oil output in conflict-affected countries is likely to remain volatile.’

If you google IMF you can download the full report. It is 117 pages and hence a lot of numbers and charts and sometimes too much jargon, rather dry to many no doubt.  Given this , one can scan those areas that most interests you if the full report would take too much time or is not of intense interest.


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