LONDON - French bank BNP Paribas raised its average U.S. crude oil price forecast for 2010 on Monday to $75 a barrel from $63.
We revise up our 2010 average to $75 on potential for renewed supply constraints, a recovery in economic growth and inflationary concerns boosting interest in commodities as a hedge, Harry Tchilinguirian, senior oil analyst at BNP Paribas said in a research note on Monday.
BNP raised its 2009 average U.S. oil forecast to $52 from $45. The bank raised its forecast for Brent crude in 2009 to $52 from $45 and for 2010 to $76 from $63.
Oil rallied by 30 percent in May, hitting over $68 a barrel on Monday, its highest since early last November.
Despite raising its forecasts BNP Paribas still expects the oil price to fall in the second half of 2009.
Much of the very bearish fundamental developments for H1'09 retained in our March scenario have not changed. As such, despite the current exuberance around `green shoots' in the economy, we still see the potential for correction in the oil price into the $40s over June-July, BNP's note said. (Reporting by Joe Brock; editing by James Jukwey)