* WHAT: EIA's Short-Term Energy Outlook report
* WHEN: Tuesday at noon EST (1700 GMT)
* Smaller U.S. job creation, expensive oil hurts demand
* International Energy Agency, OPEC to release forecasts
* EIA had biggest 2011 oil demand growth among 3 forecasts
By Tom Doggett and Ayesha Rascoe
WASHINGTON, Feb 7 The U.S. government may lower
its forecast for global oil demand as higher crude prices and
weaker economic growth could cut into petroleum consumption.
The U.S. Energy Information Administration report is the
first of major global oil demand forecasts coming out this
week, with the International Energy Agency and OPEC both
releasing their outlooks this Thursday.
The new EIA forecast follows weaker-than-expected U.S. job
creation for January, which showed the economy produced only
36,000 new jobs during the month, far less than expected.
Weaker job growth along with expensive crude oil, which
topped $100 a barrel for Brent crude following the political
unrest in the Middle East, could translate into less oil use.
"High oil prices if sustained will slow demand," said Phil
Flynn, energy analyst at PFG Best in Chicago.
Tim Evans, energy analyst for Citi Futures Perspective,
said a combination of high energy prices and bad winter weather
could reduce oil use, especially for transportation
"If we cancel a bunch of flights. If we can't drive...then
that hurts oil demand," he said.
Evans also said the prospect for strong oil demand growth
is limited by the continued high unemployment rate. "So the
longer it takes for us to see an employment impact from the
economic recovery, the longer it will be until we see robust
fuel demand," he said.
But Matt Smith, an energy analyst with Summit Energy in
Kentucky, said oil prices would have to go way above $100 a
barrel to really hurt the global economy.
Smith called the U.S. jobs report misleading, noting that
manufacturing is showing its fastest pace of growth since 2004
and the services sector is growing at its fastest rate since
The EIA last month raised its estimate for global oil
demand growth this year by 20,000 barrels per day to 1.45
million bpd for a 1.7 percent annual growth rate.
In its first outlook for 2012, the agency said in its
January report that oil demand should grow by 1.9 percent, or
1.63 million bpd.
Global oil demand growth this year and next will be above
the recent 10-year average of about a 1.2 percent annual
increase, according to the agency.
The EIA's forecast normally falls in the middle of the
separate oil demand outlooks put out by the International
Energy Agency and OPEC. But EIA had the biggest oil demand
growth among the three forecasts issued last month.
IEA raised its oil demand growth forecast in January by
80,000 bpd for 2011 to 1.41 million bpd and OPEC increased its
global oil use outlook by 50,000 bpd to 1.23 million.
(Reporting by Tom Doggett; Editing by Lisa Shumaker)