Brent crude oil spot prices are expected to average $67/bbl this year, which is $3/bbl lower than forecast last month in the US Energy Information Administration’s Short-Term Energy Outlook.
In this month’s STEO, EIA reports expecting Brent to remain at $67/bbl in 2020. EIA’s lower Brent price path for this year reflects rising uncertainty about global oil demand growth.
Brent spot prices averaged $71/bbl in May, largely unchanged from April and almost $6/bbl lower than the price in May 2018. However, Brent prices fell sharply in recent weeks, reaching $62/bbl on June 5.
EIA expects that crude oil prices will increase from current levels by year end. It forecasts that Brent prices will average $68/bbl in this year’s fourth quarter because of inventory withdrawals during the summer, lower-than-expected production from the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, and the expected increase in demand for light, sweet crude oil ahead of the implementation of low sulfur bunker fuel regulations in January 2020.
EIA expects that prices will remain near that level in 2020 based on its forecast of relatively balanced global oil markets next year.