How to Profit from the Oil Price Forecast

Moors says the most prudent way to benefit from rising oil prices is to invest in a basket of oil services stocks via an exchange-traded fund (ETF). With an ETF, investors don’t have to worry about futures contracts. ETFs can be purchased and sold as easily as individual stocks.

His top pick to benefit from the forecast ranges is the VanEck Vectors Oil Services ETF (NYSE Arca: OIH). OIH holds 25 oil stocks. The top two alone are expected to post impressive returns over the next year. Those two are Schlumberger (NYSE: SLB) and Halliburton (NYSE: HAL). In the next 12 months, SLB is estimated to reach $90.29 per share and HAL is forecast to reach $50.61. From today’s prices, those targets translate to share price increases of 14% and 18%, respectively.

OIH closely follows the MVIS U.S. Listed Oil Services 25 Index, which tracks the largest 25 U.S. oil field services companies. Some of these, like SLB and HAL, are the largest oil services companies globally as well, with market capitalization of more than $100 billion each.

The exposure to the 25 biggest oil services firms means that investors don’t bear the risk of investing in small oil services companies in a range-bound oil price climate. Larger firms will make it through the oil company debt crisis in all likelihood. Smaller companies are more at risk of being acquired or succumbing to bankruptcy. Those small companies should be avoided now.

Investors can also benefit from the climbing price of oil long term through two other funds. One is the United States Oil Fund LP (NYSE: USO). The second is the SPDR S&P Oil & Gas Exploration & Production ETF (NYSE: XOP), which allows investors to gain exposure in a group of oil exploration and production companies.

Investors who want a stock to play the oil price increase are advised to buy one of Moors’ picks to benefit from its position in the pipeline, Genesis Energy LP (NYSE: GEL). Houston-based GEL is a master limited partnership (MLP).

Roughly 90% of MLP revenue comes from oil and gas. Midstream MLPs connect refiners and producers via the transportation and storage of oil.
Because they are not out in the fields exploring and pumping the wells, the transportation and storage provider MLPs benefit from rising prices, but have far less exposure to any downside in the oil patch than oil producers do.

GEL shares currently trade at $36.36. Its one-year price target, according to Thomson Reuters, is $41.25. That’s a 13% price increase.

The other upside to GEL is a very strong dividend. It is currently 7.66% – impressively better than the 2.1% average yield of the S&P 500 dividend payers.

Three Factors That Will Drive Oil Prices Higher

For the rest of 2016, Moors expects WTI crude oil to trade in a range of around $40 per barrel minimum and rise to a range of $60 per barrel in 2017.
Despite that forecast, the markets have seen near-term fluctuations. In late July, markets reacted to a drop in oil prices. WTI crude oil price fell to $42.41 per barrel, the lowest price since mid-April, when it closed at $39.78. Futures dropped 12.2%. The Brent crude price per barrel was down 11% in late July.

Why such a relatively steep decline? Some analysts are concerned about rising supplies of oil in the United States. You see, the Baker Hughes (NYSE: BHI) oil rig count has been climbing. During July, BHI reported that active rigs were increasing for the four straight weeks.

A rise in rig count during 2015 led to a drop in crude oil prices of 50%. Morgan Stanley (NYSE: MS) estimates that supply outside of the OPEC producers will climb this year – and that crude prices per barrel will bottom at $35 in 2016.

Moors cautions that the pullback in oil prices is a normal market fluctuation, and oil won’t fall as low as Morgan Stanley predicts.

He cites three reason that support his $50 per barrel price range this year – and a rise to a $60 range for WTI per barrel in 2017.

The first bullish factor for oil prices is peaking worldwide output.

In the early part of the year, output by OPEC hit more than 32 million barrels daily, its highest level in nearly two decades. Output in Russia reached nearly 11 million barrels, the highest level in three decades.

Moors observes that production in the U.S. from shale is reaching a high as well. You see, tight oil wells and shale oil wells pump the majority of their production within the first year and a half.

According to Moors, production of oil by shale drilling, though, becomes expensive. As a result, oil companies are moving to a type of well dubbed “drilled but uncompleted” (DUC). As the term implies, a DUC hasn’t reached its output peak. They still have oil, so oil companies are going back to them.

Why? They are more affordable than other methods of obtaining oil.
DUCs are slowly being used to supplant shale as an oil supply source. The oil companies don’t want more supply flooding the market.

As Moors puts it, “an increase in DUCs doesn’t mean we are approaching some major boost in production. But they also represent another element restraining the slide in prices.”

The second factor supporting a bullish oil price forecast is falling supply due to the financial situation at oil companies. They can’t afford to keep wells working when their product commands just $46 per barrel at the market.

Over the past two years, supply has been on a steady downward march – which Moors estimates will not reverse soon. According to the BHI rig count, active U.S. oil rigs totaled 337 in late June. At its peak two years ago? Rigs totaled approximately 1,600. That’s a whopping decline of nearly 79%.
Because oil rigs can cost between $500,000 to $3 million to operate and maintain, it is not cost-effective to keep them going until crude oil starts to hit $65 per barrel. Production may ramp up when it hits that level. Most companies need WTI crude to be close to $70 per barrel before they hit reasonable profitability.

So, the BHI rig count shows that the oil companies are shutting down more and more oil rigs. Essentially, we will see a dropping count until supply is constrained enough to drive prices higher.

Save Big On Your London Trip By Proper Planning And Research

If you are a true adventurer at heart, you will want to plan and organize yourself the family trip to London you are thinking of. If you do not have time or do not know how to use the mouse and go online, then you will have to rely on your travel agent. Unfortunately, in such case your choices will be limited to what the agent will arrange for you. He or she may give you some brochures or can give you some London travel tips, especially if they went to London themselves.

But you and your family members will have much more fun if you try to prepare DIY vacations in London. In most cases it will cost you less and you will have double the fun – both during the preparations for the trip and when you actually get there.

It is important that you involve in planning and preparations all members of the family that will go with you – especially the teenagers! They will feel important, they may provide you with interesting input and the whole planning task will be a very useful educational job for them.

Most importantly, you will know what the expectations are learning about them will help avoid future disappointments and quarrels when you come to London. Such as about where to go and how to get there – e.g., going to one more museum or to do window shopping at Stella McCartney’s store, or whether to have a family meal at a pub or an ethnic eatery. Or other strategic issues, such as when to wake up, when leave the hotel and when to go to bed. It’s good to agree on that ahead of time and even put that in writing.

You should start the trip planning process by having a family meeting. Do brain storming to find out what the expectations about the trip are. Put in writing all of the ideas for the best London trip you would like to have. Start a London trip planning binder or folder and bring it to that meeting. You may already have some pictures and articles downloaded from the Internet and brochures from local travel agents.

By the way, I guarantee you that in the future you will appreciate having your stuff neatly gathered in that binder. It will be convenient and time saving and you will have quick and easy access to everything related to your London trip. You may even take the whole folder or at least part of it with you – to London.

Now, another smart move is to split the planning and research between family members – e.g., somebody works on finding the best airfare and accommodation, the other person plans the sightseeing itinerary and another one (if applicable) works on moving around the city and finding best shopping and dining. By doing that you will get everybody involved and excited during much longer period than the week you will be spending in London.

What is the best way to conduct your online research to prepare your London trip? Most of the people would go to Google and rely on that most popular search engine. It is true that you can be just fine by using it and its other popular products – like Google Earth. Some people say they do not have to travel to the UK; they can visit every corner of London with the powerful Google Earth program! Another excellent Google product you will find useful is Google pictures – it will help you easily recognize the London landmarks when you land there.

But I would like to suggest that you also use another search engine for your London trip research and planning. It is called Clusty – [http://clusty.com] – and it uses clusters – a bit different technology and presentation of search results. I found it very useful and convenient and use it a lot.

While doing your online research, use a methodical approach – create a folder in your Favorites, you can call it “London Trip” or something like that. Divide it into a number of sub-folders (e.g., Flights, Hotels, Museums, Castles, Entertainment, Dining, etc.) and save your most interesting findings accordingly.

The other good idea is to print the most important things and keep them in the trip folder for easy access.

Those are some of the most important planning tips that will make planning of your family trip much easier. If you use them, you will be well organized and as a result, you will save time and possibly money too – it will be easier for you to find great flight and hotel deals. Moreover, by making your preparations in such a methodical way, you will have all the bases covered and instead of unpleasant surprises, you will have a lot of fun when you finally get to London.