Oil prices could remain stuck for the rest of the year, bankers say

Despite the market seeing a strong improvement this February, and hitting a net positive for this year as a whole with the best monthly advance for 12 months being recorded, the recovery in oil prices has halted again in the past few weeks

An investment banking panel has said that the present precise price range of about $40 (£28) per barrel for international oil could remain persistent for the duration of 2016

Reuters has reported that the overall supply of US oil has dropped to just under 9.18 million barrels of oil per day, which is the lowest it has been in around 18 months.

International benchmark crude recently fell because of concerns over a plan to freeze oil output at January levels, which was being negotiated with a number of major global oil powers, but the market eventually settled back at around the $40 per barrel mark.

Despite this, Wall Street Journal quizzed 13 bankers who think that the per-barrel price, which has failed to really take off above $41-42, may well not climb any higher in the months to come. In fact, they have forecast average prices of only $40, with a prediction that the second quarter could reach a low of $37, amidst fears that the proposed supply deal will not remain in place.

This will pose challenges for the likes of Royal Dutch Shell, makers of Shell Tellus S2 M 32, who will be hoping for an increase in prices sooner rather than later.