Analyst: Oil finds won't affect price

March 14, 2012 at 8:06 AM
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LONDON, March 14 (UPI) -- Oil discoveries and advancements in exploration are easing supply concerns but it may be awhile for the market to feel the effects, advisers said.

Analysts at major investment firms told Bloomberg News that crude oil futures were on track to settle at around $100 per barrel by 2015, roughly 10 percent lower than current prices. Morgan Stanley said it expects offshore drilling to uncover around 25 billion barrels of oil this year.

"The price of oil has to come down because supply prospects are so positive," Manouchehr Takin, an analyst at the Center for Global Energy Studies in London, told the news service. "The rate of demand isn't going to grow as in the past as we use resources more efficiently."

Tensions over Iranian sanctions are in part to blame for rising oil prices. Oil prices soared last year because the war in Libya left some crude oil off the market, causing some analysts to worry about the effects on the global economy.

Colin Lothian, an analyst at Wood Mackenzie, told the news service that even though more oil discoveries are on the horizon, that won't do much to calm current market jitters.

"It takes four to eight years from exploration to bringing supply on the market, so new discoveries won't have a material impact on supply for a few years," he said. "Concerns in the market are different, about potential disruption in supply."

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