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Long Term Energy Outook

By: Jeremy Smith

Iraq Oil Production stabilizing above 2 Million Barrels per day

Usual suspects for Strikes Norway, Nigeria, and Venezuela

Saudi Production over 10 Million Barrels per day

Largest Importers to U.S. and amount weekly

Russian Oil giant Yukos back taxes problem ( produces 1.72 Million barrels per day) alot of export revues for Russia too lose

Key Market Fundamentals

U.S. Crude Oil Inventories starting at the beginning of January 2004 where at a historical tightness level of approximately 270 Million Barrels and growing into the end of the first half of the year at one of the largest rates ever before seen to a high of 308 Million Barrels. For the week ending June 25th we were looking at 304.6 million barrels in inventory. These Numbers are released by the America Petroleum Institute and the Dept. of Energy every Wednesday at around 10:30 A.M. Eastern time unless delayed a day due to Holidays or technical problems. Inventory builds of both U.S. Commercial and Strategic Petroleum Reserves should not be discounted as the global economy recovered out of a severe recession and demand began building to a record pace. With OPEC members producing at the highest levels in 25 years, we feel strongly that the current U.S. supplies starting the second half of the year at aprox. 305 million barrels will climb to the highest levels seen since 1998 to 1999 by the end of August. Supplies currently are at the highest level since August of 2002 when prices had a monthly range from $26 to $31 per barrel and current oil prices sill hovering well over major support level of $35 a barrel.

Mexico and Canada exported near record amounts of Crude into the world's largest economy, knocking Saudi Arabia down from first on the list of exporters to fourth. If the Saudi's stay true to their word and come back to being number one we would anticipate U.S. Crude inventories to begin gaining rapidly.

Historically oil prices have not had great success above $40 a barrel. In 1990 to 1991 we saw a rise to $40.50 a barrel followed by a decline to $19 a barrel. Going into the Operation Iraq Freedom prices traded as high $39.99 a barrel followed by a two and half week decline to $25 a barrel. This time however we remain stubbornly high after making all time highs on the NYMEX and only time will tell. Oil producers are currently receiving the highest prices for crude in at least 25 years according to Nymex prices. OPEC members decided to raise oil production a month ago for the first time in along time. Earlier this year we had many OPEC production cuts. The end result of the recent hike in OPEC production and non OPEC members trying to take advantage of the all time high pricing should start being felt in the next 4 to 8 weeks when tankers delivering oil from the Persian Gulf begin to arrive on U.S. shores. The last time OPEC members agreed to large production increases like these was right before the Asian Crisis happened. The global economies seem to be on a recovery track but as we all have learned it could change very rapidly. If China, Japan, U.S., or Europe's economies start slowing down watch the prices rapidly reflect cutbacks of global demand for energies.

Key Summary

Targets are for U.S. Crude Oil inventories to hit the highest levels since 1998 and 1999 of 340 million barrels by the end of August. An increase from 305 million barrels to 340 barrels is a rise of 11 percent in U.S. supplies within two months. Price Targets for August are as High as $28 and as Low as $24 a barrel. Before the end of the year we could see crude trade below $20 a barrel.

Key Trading Strategies

Buying December 2004 $30 Strike Crude Oil Puts for $600 or less. (Settled at 48 ticks or $480 On July 2, 2004)

Expiration is November 16, 2004

Buying June 2005 $25 Strike Crude Oil Puts for $600 or less. (Settled at 53 ticks or $530 On July 2, 2004)

Expiration is May 17, 2005

Futures’ trading is risky and can result in losses. Futures trading is not for everyone and only risk capital should be used

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About The Author, Jeremy Smith

Jeremy Smith is Ceo and Head of Market Research with Traders Exhange Corp. (www.TradersExchange.com). Jeremy has enjoyed about 8 years of trading and founded Traders Exchange Corp. in 2002. Trading styles consist of strong blend of fundamental and technical anaylsis.
jeremy@tradersexchange.com
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