Un nouveau plafond pour les prix du pétrole

LONDRES – S'il y a bien un montant qui détermine le sort de l'économie mondiale, c'est bien celui du prix d'un baril de pétrole. Chaque récession mondiale depuis 1970 a été précédée d'au moins un doublement du prix du pétrole. Et à chaque fois que le prix du pétrole a chuté de moitié et est resté bas pendant six mois ou plus, une accélération importante de la croissance mondiale a suivi.

Apres avoir chuté de 100 à 50 dollars, le prix du pétrole est maintenant stationnaire précisément à ce niveau critique. Devons-nous donc nous attendre à ce que 50 dollars soit le prix plancher ou le prix plafond de la nouvelle fourchette de négociation du pétrole ?

La plupart des analystes considèrent 50 dollars comme un plancher, voire même comme un tremplin, parce que le positionnement sur le marché à terme laisse entrevoir une remontée des prix assez rapide à 70 ou 80 dollars. Mais l'économie et l'histoire suggèrent que prix d'aujourd'hui doit être considéré comme un plafond probable pour une fourchette de négociation bien inférieure, qui peut descendre jusqu'à 20 dollars.

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