Best of the Week
Most Popular
1.Putin’s World: Why Russia’s Showdown with the West Will Worsen - John_Mauldin
2. Stocks Bull Market Grinds Bears into Dust, Is Santa Rally Sustainable? - Nadeem_Walayat
3. Gold and Silver 2015 Trend Forecasts, Prices to Go BOOM - Austin_Galt
4.Gold Price Golden Bottom? - Toby_Connor
5.Gold Price and Miners Soar on Huge Volume - P_Radomski_CFA
6.Stock Market and the Jaws of Life or Death? - Rambus_Chartology
7.Gold Price 2015 - EWI
8.Manipulated Stock Market Short Squeezes to Another All Time High - The China Syndrome - Nadeem_Walayat
9.Gold, Silver, Crude and S&P Ending Wedge Patterns - DeviantInvestor
10.Is the Gold And Silver Golden Rule Broken? - Michael_Noonan
Last 5 days
TrueShopping.co.uk Real Customer Experience Review - Online Shopping Lessons - 26th Nov 14
Is There A New Global Consensus About Cheating Investors To Reboot Employment? - 26th Nov 14
EUR/USD – Currency Bulls Don’t Give Up - 26th Nov 14
Swiss Gold Referendum A Golden Opportunity for Switzerland - 25th Nov 14
Silver: What COT Analysis Tells Us - 25th Nov 14
Stock Market Big, Bold and Ugly - 25th Nov 14
U.S. Dollar Near Top? Gold and Silver Trading, Platinum Breakout Invalidation - 25th Nov 14
Buy Fear - Easily Pick Up Profits on Stock Market Dips - 25th Nov 14
The Islamic State Reshapes the Middle East - 25th Nov 14
Gold Price Forecast 2015 - 25th Nov 14
The Swiss Referendum On Gold: What’s Missing From The Debate - 25th Nov 14
Clash of Generations - Why Millennials Still Live at Home; Not Jobs, Student Debt, or Housing - 25th Nov 14
Stock Market Reminiscent of Pompeii - 25th Nov 14
Once Upon A Time There Were Philosopher Kings - 24th Nov 14
The 2014 Crude Oil Price Crash Explained - 24th Nov 14
China Stock Investing - Follow the Money! - 24th Nov 14
122 Tonnes of Gold Secretly Repatriated to Netherlands - 24th Nov 14
What Causes the U.S. Dollar to Move? - 24th Nov 14
Stock Market Indexes New Highs - Will Uptrend Extend Even Further? - 24th Nov 14
All Hail the King U.S. Dollar - Trend Forecast - 24th Nov 14
Where Is China Economy On The Map Exactly? - 24th Nov 14
Most of The World Economies Panic - Is The US Next? - 24th Nov 14
Stock Market Exhaustion Gap? - 24th Nov 14
Gold Golden Gains Come After The Pain - 24th Nov 14
Crude Oil and Stock Market Setting The Stage For The Next Recession - 23rd Nov 14
This Publicly-Owned Bank Is Outperforming Wall Street - 23rd Nov 14
Who’s Ready For $30 Crude Oil Price? - 23rd Nov 14
Strategic, Methodological and Developmental Importance of Knowledge Consumption - 23rd Nov 14
Manipulated Stock Market Short Squeezes to Another All Time High - The China Syndrome - 23rd Nov 14
Gold Price 2015 - 22nd Nov 14
Stock Market Medium Term Top? - 22nd Nov 14
Is the Gold And Silver Golden Rule Broken? - 22nd Nov 14
Malaysia's Subsidy and Budget Deficit Conundrum - 22nd Nov 14
Investors Hated Gold at Precisely the Wrong Time: What About Now? - 22nd Nov 14
Gold and GLD ETF Selloff - 22nd Nov 14
Currency Wars, the Ruble and Keynes - 21st Nov 14
Stock Market Investor Sentiment in The Balance - 21st Nov 14
Two Biotech Stocks Set to Double on One Powerful Catalyst - 21st Nov 14
Swiss Gold Poll Likely Tighter Than Polls Suggest - 21st Nov 14
Gold's Volatility and Other Things to Watch - 21st Nov 14
Australia Stock Market and AUD Dollar Analysis (ASX200 and AUDUSD) - 21st Nov 14
New Algae Research May Have Uncovered an “Energy Forest” Under the Sea - 21st Nov 14
The Cultural and Political Consequences of Fiat Money - 20th Nov 14
United States Social Crisis - No One Told You When to Run, You Missed the Starting Gun! - 20th Nov 14
Euro-Zone Tooth Fairy Economics, Spain Needs to leave the Euro - 20th Nov 14
Ebola Threat Remains a Risk - New Deaths in Nebraska and New York - 20th Nov 14
Stock Market and the Jaws of Life or Death? - 20th Nov 14
Putin’s World: Why Russia’s Showdown with the West Will Worsen - 20th Nov 14
Making Money While The World Burns - 20th Nov 14
Why This "Quiet Zone" Is Now Tech Stocks Biggest Profit Sector - 20th Nov 14

Free Instant Analysis

Free Instant Technical Analysis


Market Oracle FREE Newsletter

Gold Report 2015

Crude Oil Price Forecast: The "Syrian Premium" Is Not Temporary

Commodities / Crude Oil Sep 12, 2013 - 01:37 PM GMT

By: Money_Morning

Commodities

Dr. Kent Moors writes: By an apparent agreement to place its chemical weapons under international control, Syria seems to have dodged an imminent American military attack.

Yet even as the world takes a step back from the brink, three critical questions still remain:


  1. Will Syrian President Bashar Assad hand over all of his chemical weapons?
  2. Will the proposed international control mechanisms satisfy Washington?
  3. Will the final result contained in the U.N. report on the chemical weapons use outside of Damascus alter the outcome?

Of course, until the latest news hit, one result had seemed certain: The global oil market was bracing for higher prices. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) closed at a 28-month high on Friday, while Brent crossed the $116 a barrel level.

Following the agreement, that trend has reversed, sending oil prices in both New York and London lower.

But has this crisis really been defused?

Just look at oil prices, and where they're undoubtedly headed...

Calculating the "Syrian Premium"

The developing tensions have added a "Syrian Premium" to the price of oil. By my best estimate, this "crisis premium" was $4 a barrel in New York and $8 in London.

In other words, absent this premium, WTI should trade at about $103 a barrel, while Brent should trade near $107.

As of Tuesday, that premium stands at $4 in London and $3 in New York, down 50% and 30% respectively off of Friday's close.

Given Syria's place in the energy markets, that is the most direct way the crisis has impacted the energy sector.

But it is hardly the only effect.

The truth is the market has no genuine way to determine the degree of volatility resulting from what is an unknown level of instability.

Needless to say, that is usually a formula for an increase in price beyond what the market fundamentals would sustain.

How long the spike remains depends on the level of uncertainty. At the moment there are more questions than answers.

And despite this morning's news, that uncertainty is not likely to be receding anytime soon.

That is because, absent a "palace coup" to unseat Assad in Damascus, nothing was likely to happen this week to reduce the tension. Congress is back in session, but the Obama Administration is still faced with a very close vote on obtaining a Congressional approval for any strike. The specter of Iraq still weighs heavily on both sides of the aisle.

It is the same case in London, where Parliament has made it clear it will not agree to support a missile strike until the U.N. team reports findings that chemical weapons were used. That may well not take place until the end of the month, although there are likely to be leaks of the main points beforehand.

France and Saudi Arabia may have already declared support for military action, but there has been no approval for any other EU or Gulf Coordination Council member state.

Meanwhile, Moscow is pledging ongoing support for Assad (while also leaving the door open to apply U.N. Security Council-sponsored pressure against the Syrians should the U.N. report justify such a move).

In short, before the news, this week had been shaping up as one of accelerating rhetoric from the White House, considerable lobbying on both sides of the issue, and a continuing impasse.

What's Our "Goodbye Code?"

Of course, President Obama could authorize a strike without the permission of Congress. But the domestic political environment in the U.S. would not support that decision.

There are clear misgivings emerging these days over the proper American position in what is a civil conflict in Syria and little support for another open-ended military excursion into the region.

That seems to be the gravamen in all of this political maneuvering and rancor. It also reminds me of a basic rule in my earlier career.

You see, in the intelligence business, you always wanted to have what we called a "goodbye code."

A "goodbye code" was the way you intended to get out of whatever situation the higher pay grades were about to put you into. It was a basic element of strategy and the primary foundation for whatever tactics we introduced to meet our objectives.

Recent American excursions - Viet Nam, Iraq, and Afghanistan - have been light on this front. What is the objective? How do we limit our involvement to meet that end? And, most importantly, how do we prevent "mission creep?"

This is what happens when what is set up to reach an objective ends up having a life of its own. It expands into something more than initially contemplated. Means become an end in themselves, clouding the goals and the ability to wind down involvement.

Nobody in Washington wants another "boots on the ground" deployment, or a multi-year commitment to overthrowing another two-bit dictator.

For their part, the wide majority of the U.S. population needs something in addition to the acceptance that Assad is a nasty fellow. No argument there.

But what is the specific American objective, and what is our "goodbye code?"

To date, the administration has not been forthcoming here. A strike means we would be injecting U.S. power into a civil war in what is already a regional pressure cooker, a move that would certainly change the dynamics for all of the countries bordering Syria and the integrity of crude oil export routes.

No Quick Answers Here

That brings us back full circle to how this will play out for energy investors.

The truth is there will be no quick answer to anything in Syria. The talking heads will continue their banter on TV (I gave my views yesterday on Fox Business). However, there will be no resolution of the instability.

And that means oil prices will continue to rise.

It is too early to make any meaningful forecasts about how this will impact the economy as a whole. What we do know is this: There will be an observable negative pressure on economic recovery should those prices rise too quickly.

My guess this morning is that a level of $120 a barrel in New York would probably result in a market pullback, although hardly a move into another recession.

Still, hedge funds are already placing bets on higher gold prices in anticipation of higher oil levels. This is merely a result of something I identified here in Oil & Energy Investor several months ago about how oil is becoming the new "gold standard."

Oil is now playing the tune that gold dances to, with the rest of the market following closely behind.

At least until Tuesday...

Until the specifics are in, however, the proof this situation has been defused is in the details.

And those may now be set, at least initially, not in Washington or Damascus but in Moscow.

Next: Here's How to Play the "Syrian Premium"

Source :http://moneymorning.com/2013/09/12/oil-forecast-the-syrian-premium-is-not-temporary/

Money Morning/The Money Map Report

©2013 Monument Street Publishing. All Rights Reserved. Protected by copyright laws of the United States and international treaties. Any reproduction, copying, or redistribution (electronic or otherwise, including on the world wide web), of content from this website, in whole or in part, is strictly prohibited without the express written permission of Monument Street Publishing. 105 West Monument Street, Baltimore MD 21201, Email: customerservice@moneymorning.com

Disclaimer: Nothing published by Money Morning should be considered personalized investment advice. Although our employees may answer your general customer service questions, they are not licensed under securities laws to address your particular investment situation. No communication by our employees to you should be deemed as personalized investent advice. We expressly forbid our writers from having a financial interest in any security recommended to our readers. All of our employees and agents must wait 24 hours after on-line publication, or after the mailing of printed-only publication prior to following an initial recommendation. Any investments recommended by Money Morning should be made only after consulting with your investment advisor and only after reviewing the prospectus or financial statements of the company.

Money Morning Archive

© 2005-2014 http://www.MarketOracle.co.uk - The Market Oracle is a FREE Daily Financial Markets Analysis & Forecasting online publication.


Post Comment

Only logged in users are allowed to post comments. Register/ Log in

Free Report - Financial Markets 2014