Displaying items by tag: energy
The polar vortex sweeping across the south has left many American’s without energy, but investors are not as powerless...see the full story on our partner Magnifi's site
Unprecedented freezing temperatures across the south have wrangled most news headlines this week. This is causing a not so surprising collapse in production from the major U.S. manufacturers in the state most affected, Texas. But the lack of demand from refineries is creating a negative pull on oil prices as they are slower to adjust to changing conditions. Sluggish oil prices will be expected to continue despite a 3.5 million barrel shortfall in production because the refineries aren’t in high demand. On top of this demand shortfall, OPEC has announced plans to ramp up production. These combining factors have produced about a 2% decline in WTI crude futures after declining 1% in trading last Thursday. Finally, the Biden administration has set the course to re-engage with the 2015 Iran nuclear agreement, however, Trump-era oil sanctions have not been reversed.
FINSUM: The run-up in oil prices over the last two weeks was driven by inclement weather in the U.S. but look to the finer details of global production in the next couple of weeks to push oil prices back down. Examine related sectors, like the airline industry, to capitalize on these fluctuations.
Polls have Biden well ahead of President Trump at the moment. In fact, some pollsters say that Biden is further ahead leading up to election day than any candidate in the last 20 years. Markets have somewhat followed this and are clearly anticipating a Biden victory. That said, there is almost nobody who doesn’t think the race will be very close. So, how to play it if Trump surprises the markets and wins? Three sectors seem like they would benefit most strongly: traditional energy companies, defense companies, and large-cap banks. Trump’s light-touch regulatory approach would help energy companies and large banks, while defense spending would probably continue to rise under Trump.
FINSUM: Most agree that if Trump surprises, the market is not going to shoot higher like it did in 2016, primarily because there is not a big proposed tax cut.
When you think of oil, you don’t normally think of an industry that would gain from a big win by Democrats in an election. But as it happens, oil could very well gain if Democrats sweep the presidency and congress. The reason why is slightly perverse, but that makes it no less relevant. The concept is that Democrats would be bring new regulation around fracking; specifically, regulations that limit new drilling but allow existing projects. What this would mean is a steady rise in prices as inventory becomes constrained as the recovery proceeds. For example, Morgan Stanley is forecasting almost a 100% gain in natural gas prices next year.
FINSUM: Oil and gas are a physical supply and demand market, and if regulations keep supply in the ground, then prices will rise.
Because of how the polls are trending, very few seem to be thinking about the fact that a Republican sweep of all three chambers of the government could happen. When you step away from the polls and think about the fact that Republicans currently control two of the three chambers, it becomes more realistic; and even more so when you consider that polls are likely skewed towards Democrats because of “silent” Republican supporters. If the Republicans sweep, or even just if Trump wins, then the sectors that will surge are energy, banks, healthcare, and defense. In particular, think names like Marathon Petroleum, Bank of America, Pfizer, and Northrop Grumman.
FINSUM: This may be unlikely, but it is not as wildly unrealistic as some make it sound. Perhaps smart to have a portion of the portfolio in these sectors headed into the election?