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Why Oil Prices Will Rise More And Sooner Than Most Believe
By David Yager - Sep 23, 2016
What we do know is the global oil data avalanche is relentless and each and every one causes oil prices to wiggle. That’s because making money by trading is, at least volumetrically, a much bigger business than finding and producing the oil-product. The Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME) brags, “Trade Light Sweet Crude Oil (WTI), the world’s most actively traded energy product”. And trade they do. On February 10, 2016 the CME alone (other exchanges also trade WTI) traded a record 1,609,771 WTI contracts of 1,000 barrels each. That day 1.6 billion “dry barrels” were traded while actual North America production, which is priced off WTI, was less than 13 million “wet barrels” of actual oil. This means on that day 123 “futures market” barrels were traded for every barrel produced. On just the CME. ( dry-barrel is trading oil-futures --- wet-barrel is producing liquid oil and fill the liquid in a barrel, so you get a wet-barrel )
This assures financially engineered volatility. It’s gotta move or this new industry has nothing to do. Markets are now conditioned to scheduled weekly data releases of U.S. inventories and rig counts, all of which cause prices to change. Which is of course good for traders. This leads to speculation leading up to releases, voluminous reporting and analysis thereafter, and an oil price vacillation one way or the other almost immediately as traders shift their bets based on the latest snippets of data.