On Wednesday, the price of oil was tumbling again, with West Texas Intermediate prices falling more than 8% to trade back below $49 a barrel.
This action follows a furious rally in oil prices seen over the last few days that sent oil prices in to a technical bull market, rising more than 20% from last Thursday through Tuesday afternoon. WTI prices were as high as $52.50 just hours ago.
The speed and velocity of the recent increase in oil prices, however, has been met with some skepticism, with some calling the move a “short squeeze” or a “dead cat bounce.” In short, there were and are some nonbelievers in the oil rally, and major Wall Street firms have not yet changed their outlooks for lower oil prices in the first half of this year.
And in a research note earlier this week, analysts at Morgan Stanley outlined why any rallies in oil prices in the first half of this year ultimately won’t last.
On Twitter, Dan Greenhaus at BTIG noted that, ” In the last 5 YEARS, oil has been down a greater percentage than today on only TWO other days; the day of the OPEC announcement and May ’11.”
Oil prices are still about 50% below their peaks hit in the summer.
The latest leg lower in oil prices comes after the latest report from the EIA showed that crude oil inventories rose by another 6 million barrels last week, more than was expected by economists and analysts.
Here’s Wednesday’s drop in WTI futures.
Looking at prices over the last year, the drop is still dramatic, though the recent rally makes a dent, however small.