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Mirae’s Kwan Is Top Forecaster for Oil; Danske Leads Brent

Mirae Asset Securities Ltd. was the most accurate forecaster of oil traded in New York out of 26 analysts ranked by Bloomberg over the last eight quarters.

Estimates by Gordon Kwan, Mirae’s Hong Kong-based head of regional energy research, for West Texas Intermediate crude were closest to the actual price from the third quarter of 2009 to the quarter ended June 30.

“Oil prices are well supported in a very high trading range,” Kwan said by phone from Hong Kong today. “It’s very profitable for the energy sector but not high enough to kill any economic growth. We’re in a sweet spot.”

Kwan expects WTI crude to trade from $90 to $110 a barrel this year as rising Chinese demand is offset by higher OPEC production. Kwan formerly worked for CLSA Asia-Pacific Markets Ltd., the regional brokerage unit of Credit Agricole SA.

Christin Tuxen of Danske Bank A/S and Francisco Blanch of Bank of America Merrill Lynch were the top forecasters of Brent crude and Henry Hub natural gas futures, respectively, the Bloomberg ranking survey found.

Oil capped eight straight months of gains through April as violence in Libya halted most of the nation’s output, raising concern the gains would derail the global economic recovery. The International Energy Agency said June 23 its members will offer 60 million barrels of oil in the first release of strategic stockpiles in almost six years. OPEC failed on June 8 to agree on a plan to make up for Libyan exports, prompting Saudi Arabia to offer extra supplies.

Mirae was followed by Danske Bank, Standard Chartered Bank, Societe Generale SA and National Australia Bank Ltd. as the most accurate WTI forecasters.

Danske Bullish

Tuxen, a Copenhagen-based analyst at Danske Bank, had the lowest margin of error for North Sea Brent crude prices out of 19 analysts surveyed by Bloomberg.

“We have been fairly bullish,” Tuxen said by telephone. “We are looking for global growth, and especially Asian growth, to bounce back. China’s demand for raw materials will pick up again and that should be a fairly positive factor for oil.”

Danske Bank forecasts Brent will average $111 a barrel in 2011 and $117 in 2012 on a “tighter market.”

WTI crude for August delivery declined 70 cents, or 0.7 percent, to $96.80 a barrel at 1:22 p.m. on the New York Mercantile Exchange. It has advanced 25 percent in the past 12 months. Brent for September settlement was up 7 cents at $117.13 a barrel on the ICE Futures Europe exchange. Brent has risen 54 percent in the past year.

Blanch, head of global commodities research at Bank of America Merrill Lynch, was the most accurate forecaster for Nymex Henry Hub natural gas prices out of 12 analysts.

The following table lists the best forecasters of WTI and Brent crude and Henry Hub gas prices ranked by Bloomberg for the last eight quarters ended June 30.

Bloomberg Rankings Best Forecasters of Energy Prices
NYMEX West Texas Intermediate
 Rank Name             Company
  1   Gordon Kwan      Mirae Asset Securities HK Ltd.
  2   Christin Tuxen   Danske Bank A/S
  3   Helen Henton     Standard Chartered Bank
  4   Michael Wittner  Societe Generale SA
  5   Ben Westmore     National Australia Bank Ltd.

ICE Brent Crude
 Rank Name             Company
  1   Christin Tuxen   Danske Bank A/S
  2   Gordon Kwan      Mirae Asset Securities HK Ltd.
  3   Michael Wittner  Societe Generale SA
  4   Michael Lo       Nomura International Hong Kong Ltd.
  5   Hannes Loacker   Raiffeisen Bank International AG

NYMEX Henry Hub natural gas
 Rank Name             Company
  1   Francisco Blanch Bank of America Merrill Lynch
  2   Peter Buchanan   CIBC World Markets Inc.
  3   Eugen Weinberg   Commerzbank AG
  4   Jason Kenney     ING Wholesale Banking
  5   Jason Schenker   Prestige Economics LLC

Source: Bloomberg
Methodology note: Rankings are based on quarterly forecasts from
the third quarter of 2009 through the second quarter of 2011.
Rankings were based on average margins of error, which were
calculated by subtracting the forecast from the actual oil price
and dividing the result by the price. To qualify for each
ranking, a company had to submit at least four forecasts,
including one for 2011.

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