Powered By Blogger

About Me

Retired chief investment officer and former NYSE firm partner with 50 plus years experience in field as analyst / economist, portfolio manager / trader, and CIO who has superb track record with multi $billion equities and fixed income portfolios. Advanced degrees, CFA. Having done much professional writing as a young guy, I now have a cryptic style. 40 years down on and around The Street confirms: CAVEAT EMPTOR IN SPADES !!!

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Oil Price

Longer Term
The oil price has not been able to hold above the downtrend line set by connecting the 2008
bubble top and the 2011 Libya coup top. The cyclical uptrend from the late 2008 bottom was
broken in 2011 effectively ending the cyclical price recovery story, at least for the time being.
WTIC 5 Year Chart Over the past nearly two years, there has been a narrowing trading range
market which has presented  both long and short trading opportunites but in an environment
that has grown more tame with time. This is not atypical post price bubble behavior, especially
for the oil market.

Shorter Term
I have done alright trading the oil price over past couple of years, and even though the market's
movements have grown less dramatic, I do have a keen interest in oil this year, as I have been
thinking there would be more pressure from NATO and Israel to deal with the Iranian nuclear
program in 2013. We are, however, off to an inauspicious start so far. Israeli voters have
slapped Bibi around pretty well and Obama has put up Chuck Hagel as Defense Sec. Chuck has
little patience with the Israeli political lobby in the US, is critical of US military adventures in
the Mid-east and is aware of the risks in a military confrontation with Iran. Nevertheless, reports
do indicate Iran is getting ever closer to turning out bomb grade nuclear material, and, even if
neither the US or Israel opt to try and take out much of Iran's program, there will be tough talk
after the UN offers a compromise, talk that is tough enough to get the oil traders interested in
pushing up the oil price. Moreover, the war in Syria continues to turn more violent with
widening but still moderate spillover.

The oil price is at a periodic seasonal low point with refinery changeover to warmer weather
gasoline blends winding up. Predicting bombing runs on Iran has been a staple of trader tactics
for nearly a decade, and the boyz like to gear up the buzz at the end of each Feb. With the oil
market set to move into a seasonally strong period, it might be worthwhile to see how all the
market players and pundits may try and "amp" it. WTIC The chart indicators say it is still a
bit early, so keep an eye out if this is a market that interests you.

No comments: