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Billionaire investor Cooperman says US crude can hit $70, names energy stock picks

  • Billionaire investor Leon Cooperman says U.S. crude could rise to $70 a barrel.
  • Cooperman's firm Omega Advisors correctly forecast oil would end 2017 near $60 a barrel.
  • The firm's energy picks include Nabors, WPX Energy, Parsley Energy and Hess.
Leon Cooperman
Scott Mlyn | CNBC
Leon Cooperman

Billionaire investor Leon Cooperman predicted U.S. oil's rise to $60 a barrel, and now he says it could hit $70.

"I think the supply-demand outlook is favorable, and we would not be surprised to see oil reaching $70 a barrel," the chairman and CEO of Omega Advisors told CNBC's "Fast Money: Halftime Report" on Wednesday.

Cooperman made his comments despite U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude prices tanking earlier in the morning, falling about 3 percent to a one-month low of $61.33.

When Cooperman made his call in May that oil would end 2017 close to $60, WTI was trading around $49 a barrel. The commodity ended the last session of the year at $60.42.

Omega Advisors has about 6 to 7 percent of its portfolio allocated to energy stocks based on its view that the outlook for the sector is "decent," according to Cooperman.

Among the names Omega Advisors thinks will benefit most from higher oil prices are drilling contractor Nabors and independent U.S. drillers WPX Energy, Parsley Energy and Hess.