Singapore: Morgan Stanley has raised its forecast of US crude oil price to $105 a barrel in 2012 from $95 due to tightening spare capacity, the US bank said in a research note seen on Monday.
It expected global spare production capacity to stay ample through end-2010, before declining in 2011 and reaching 2007-08-like tightness by 2012.
“Assuming that demand returns to growth, we see global spare capacity back to 2007-08 levels by 2012, and getting even tighter thereafter,” Morgan Stanley said.
“We believe that prices will need to move higher to ration demand as the world struggles to find enough supply,” it said, adding that the research was based on the bank’s proprietary database of more than 460 fields expected to come online through 2015.
International benchmark US crude peaked above $147 in July 2008 on strong demand from emerging economies such as China.
But the global economic recession has curtailed energy demand and slashed oil prices, which have traded around $68 to $71 a barrel over the last week.
Morgan Stanley assumes oil demand to fall by 2 million barrels per day (bpd) this year, rebound by 1 million bpd in 2010 and then grow by just 1% thereafter, it said.
Post 2012, global liquids production shows the potential to increase to what the bank believes will be a maximum achievable level of roughly 92 million bpd, it said.
Even if this record level is achievable, global demand growth at 1% annually would still leave the market tight, it added.
There was considerable downside to much of the post-2013 production schedule, the report said, citing political wrangling over Project Kuwait, oil laws in Brazil, militant attacks in Nigeria and an array of issues with Iraq, Iran and Venezuela that will put global spare capacity at risk.