Roll out the barrel

Analyst warns of oil at $200 a barrel
Crude oil prices could surge to $200 a barrel in the next two years, according to the Goldman Sachs analyst who three years ago correctly predicted a price “super-spike” above $100 a barrel. The warning by Arjun Murti came as oil prices hit a fresh high above $122 a barrel, boosted by supply disruptions in Nigeria, lower output in Russia and continued robust demand in China ahead of the Olympics.

Mr Murti said the energy crisis could be coming to a head as a lack of adequate supply growth was becoming apparent. He said: “The possibility of $150-$200 per barrel seems increasingly likely over the next six to 24 months.” He added that the spare capacity of OPEC to cushion against unexpected supply shocks was very low. Last month, Chakib Khelil, president of OPEC, also warned oil could reach $200 a barrel. The number of oil option contracts betting on oil hitting $200 a barrel in December has tripled since the beginning of the year.