Goldman Sachs Group Inc. (GS) cut its forecasts for Brent and WTI crude prices next year on rising global supplies, predicting OPEC will lose influence over the oil market amid the U.S. shale boom.
The bank is becoming more confident in the scale and sustainability of U.S. shale oil production and said U.S. benchmark prices need to decline to $75 a barrel for a slowdown in output growth. Brent will average $85 a barrel in the first quarter, down from a previous forecast of $100, and West Texas Intermediate will sell for $75 a barrel in the period, from an earlier estimate of $90, analysts including Jeffrey Currie wrote in a report.
The biggest members of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries are discounting supplies to defend market share rather than cutting production to boost prices that have collapsed into a bear market. The highest U.S. output in almost 30 years is helping increase stockpiles as exporters including Saudi Arabia reduce prices to stimulate demand.