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Oil prices grew by 1.1 percent in September modestly rebounding from a 7 percent drop in July. Since January, when the price of Brent crude reached a 12-year low, oil prices have rebounded by 50 percent and nearly reached last year's average of $46.99 per barrel. Barring any market surprises, a further recovery of oil prices hinges on a reduction of oil production by OPEC member states in the fourth quarter.

Fluctuations in global crude oil prices have always been the focus of the economic and financial news. The higher crude oil prices rise, the more positive is the economic outlook for petroleum exporters. In contrast, countries dependent on petroleum imports suffer to varying degrees from those same higher prices as import bills increase. Estimates for the price per barrel for crude oil from leading financial and multilateral institutions are thus closely monitored by governments, investors, and consumers alike.

Leading international agencies made the following oil price predictions during the first half of this year:

  • The World Bank in its July commodity forecast report estimated that the average spot price for crude oil will fall slightly further in 2016 to $43/bbl from $51/bbl in 2015. This is a revision of the Bank's earlier 2016 forecast of $41/bbl and takes into account supply disruptions in Canada and Nigeria during the second quarter as well as strong demand.
  • The IMF's June report revealed a similar expected decline from $51.6/bbl in 2015 to $43.6/bbl in 2016, based on demand projections, supply outages and a modest rebound in the number of rotary rigs in the US.
  • Global crude oil price forecasts from the OECD and the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) are also provided in our visualizations below. The OECD in June published a forecast that shows 2017 oil prices flat at $50 per barrel. In contrast, according to the April estimate from the EIU, oil prices will go up in 2017, because oil consumption will outstrip production.

View more energy statistics and visualizations related to energy, including the estimated breakeven cost of oil production by countrynatural gas price dynamics and insights from the BP Energy Outlook 2035, or dive deeper into historical commodity prices from the World Bank and IMF or commodity price forecasts. You can also explore with Knoema a variety of other critical commodities, including: gold | silver | copper | aluminum | nickel | zinc | coal

As you examine commodity prices and forecasts, you may also be interested in economic forecasts for the G20 countries across the following indicators: GDP growth | inflation | unemployment | government debt | current account balance | external debt.

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