"We Are Not There Yet": Prior Bear Markets Suggest Even More Pain For Oil

Back on November 1, when WTI was trading at $65, BMO technical analyst Russ Visch forecast - correctly - that West Texas Intermediate would soon drop to $51.50. He was right, and as of this morning, WTI traded just above $50, its third 7% plunge in the past two weeks (and no, it's not due to "negative gamma" as Goldman tried to convince its clients, even as it was also trying to convince them to just keep BTFD).

So now that it has hit Visch's target, is oil's drop finally over?

Unfortunately for oil bulls, in his latest note published earlier today, Visch has some bad news, highlighting that during the last two cyclical bear markets in 2011 and 2015, oil only stopped falling when stocks bottomed. And as the ongoing price action in the S&P shows, the drop in stocks is hardly over.

Here is Visch: "Crude oil was recently more oversold on a short-term basis than at any point since 1984, prompting many to speculate that it had to be close to making the final low following the most punishing six week slide in more than three years. (Surely, it can’t get any worse than that, right?)."

It turns out it can, and here's why:

We felt it would be instructive to highlight how crude oil acted during the two most recent cyclical bear markets in 2011 and 2015. It's no coincidence that WTI bottomed the same day as the stock market did during the last two cyclical bear markets.

So despite the current extreme oversold readings in WTI, the decline will not end until we see a low in equity markets, and as we have noted in recent reports, we're not there yet.

It will probably not come as a surprise that Visch is also downbeat on stocks, noting the lack of cathartic selling and lackluster breadth. So between the ongoing rout in crude, and the lack of a bottom in stocks, Visch believes that bears still have the upper hand.