Bloomberg News

Crude May Advance on Signs of Economic Recovery, Survey Shows

February 01, 2012

Jan. 20 (Bloomberg) -- Crude may rise next week on speculation an economic recovery in the U.S., the world’s top oil consumer, will boost demand, a Bloomberg News survey showed.

Eighteen of 40 analysts, or 45 percent, forecast oil will advance through Jan. 27. Fifteen respondents, or 38 percent, predicted prices will drop and seven estimated there will be little change. Last week, 50 percent of surveyed analysts expected a decline.

The number of Americans filing for unemployment benefits fell to the lowest level in almost four years, the Labor Department reported yesterday. European Central Bank President Mario Draghi said this year will be a “much better” one for the euro area as the region’s debt crisis ebbs.

“Some of the economic data has been pretty upbeat and we are seeing more confidence in the U.S. economy,” said Phillip Streible, a Chicago-based commodities broker at RJO Futures. “We’ve also seen some kind of progress being made in Europe”

U.S. weekly jobless claims plunged by 50,000 to 352,000 in the week ended Jan. 14, the lowest level since April 2008, according to the Labor Department.

“I am confident that the euro will be in better shape in 2012 because I look at the progress that has been achieved on the two root causes of the situation, namely lack of fiscal discipline and lack of structural reform,” Draghi said at a press conference yesterday in Abu Dhabi.

The 27 European Union member states accounted for 16 percent of global oil consumption last year, according to the BP Statistical Review of World Energy. The U.S. used 21 percent.

Crude oil for February delivery declined 24 cents to $98.46 a barrel this week on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract expired today.

The oil survey has correctly predicted the direction of futures 48 percent of the time since its start in April 2004.

-- Editors: Margot Habiby, Charlotte Porter

I FUTURES NI CRUDE NI US NI ASIA NI OILMARKET NI ANA NI UK NI SURVEY

-0- Jan/19/2012 20:52 GMT

-0- Jan/19/2012 21:18 GMT

-0- Jan/20/2012 04:25 GMT

-0- Jan/20/2012 04:25 GMT

To contact the reporter on this story: Moming Zhou in New York at Mzhou29@bloomberg.net;

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Dan Stets at dstets@bloomberg.net


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