FIGURE 1: WTI CRUDE OIL PRICES—10-YEAR DAILY CHART
Note: Daily closing price for West Texas Intermediate (NYMEX) crude oil. Data as of 2/18/2020.
FIGURE 2: 18-MONTH U.S. AVERAGE RETAIL GAS PRICES
FIGURE 3: NATURAL GAS PRICE VS. U.S. CONSUMPTION TREND
Sources: Barron’s, based on data from U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), Bloomberg
FIGURE 4: WEEKLY U.S. RETAIL HEATING OIL PRICES
Note: Prices as of 2/10/2020.
Source: Advisor Perspectives, U.S. Department of Energy, dshort.com.
MarketWatch notes that crude oil prices declined sharply on Tuesday, Feb. 18, after a week in which they “booked their first weekly gains in six weeks, with WTI notching a 3.4% weekly rise, while Brent, the global benchmark, saw a 5.2% gain over the period, according to Dow Jones Market Data.”
With the mild winter in many parts of the United States, lackluster economic growth around the world, and the threat of further spread of the coronavirus, not only have prices of oil and gas products generally fallen over the past several months, but energy-related stocks and ETFs have also been adversely affected.
However, according to Barron’s on Feb. 9, 2020,
That said, they also noted,
FIGURE 5: 5-YEAR TREND FOR ENERGY SELECT SECTOR SPDR FUND (XLE)
Note: Data as of 2/18/2020.
The theme was reiterated this past weekend in Barron’s “Up and Down Wall Street” column:
While major oil company dividends would appear to be relatively secure, it is very uncertain what the short-term global growth environment will look like. According to Guggenheim Investments, the risk factor of the coronavirus spreading across the globe may have a significant impact on both China’s and the world’s economic growth estimates: