Posts Tagged ‘prices’

Ask Hunker Harry: Good weather news is bad news for US steel

Punxsutawney Phil, the famous groundhog who predicts the longevity of the US winter each year, did  not see his shadow last week, indicating an early spring. This is only the 18th time in 130 years that the groundhog failed to see his shadow. An emcee at the Groundhog Day event in the chilly northwestern Pennsylvania town told those gathered it was OK to remove their coats.

What may be great news for wide swaths of America is likely bad news for the price of ferrous scrap.

Read the rest of this entry »

Where’s the silver lining? Metals market airs concerns over global benchmark process

Regulation. Regulation. Regulation. Once again it is being blamed for the London Bullion Market Association Silver Price — operated and administrated by CME Group and Thomson/Reuters — settling around 6% below the spot price January 28. A matter of some contention across the market.

The jury is well and truly out on whether or not it is the fault of the system, or just another headache embedded by over-regulation.

Read the rest of this entry »

Good news, bad news for US biodiesel industry in 2016

Traders, marketers, producers and other stakeholders of the US biodiesel industry have converged on Tampa, Fla., this week for the 2016 National Biodiesel Conference to review the last year and look ahead to what 2016 brings.

Despite spending 2015 awash in uncertainty due to the US Environmental Protection Agency’s delayed decision on the Renewable Fuel Standard blending mandates, the biodiesel industry ended the year with a few key victories.

Read the rest of this entry »

California’s contrarian gasoline market reverses trend again for 2016

The US West Coast market is strange. Disconnected from the rest of the US, it’s a bit of a red-headed stepchild, especially for gasoline.

While the Gulf Coast can send refined products up to the Midwest or Atlantic Coast via pipeline, creating natural, obvious arbitrages, no infrastructure extends westward past the Rocky Mountains. This isolation (and strict environmental mandates in California) makes the West Coast one of the most volatile gasoline markets in the world.

Read the rest of this entry »

Despite holding steady, North Dakota braces for oil supply crash

When North Dakota oil production broke above 1 million b/d for the first time in April 2014, many expected that the 2 million b/d threshold would be breached in relatively short order.

With WTI spot prices averaging over $100/b in the months that followed, some even speculated that 2 million b/d may be too modest of a goal for a state in the throes of a shale oil renaissance.

But prices, and those expectations, have come crashing down.

Read the rest of this entry »

US ethanol seems to resist the siren song of low gasoline prices

US ethanol’s recent pursuit of gasoline’s nosedive has reminded me of the Gin Blossoms classic, “Follow You Down.” In the chorus of that 1996 hit, the band sings, “Anywhere you go, I’ll follow you down. I’ll follow you down, but not that far.”

That’s basically where US ethanol prices are at right now: Looking at gasoline prices, saying, “I’ll follow you down, but not that far.”

Read the rest of this entry »

The Oil Big Five: What news is good news for oil in 2016?

Welcome to the first version of The Oil Big Five for 2016, when we round up some of the biggest news and trends from the global oil industry and think to ourselves: Wow, things sure have changed since our first post.

But then, that’s oil for you: Things are always changing, and yet some things remain the same. We asked our oil editors and analysts around the world for what they think are outstandingly important drivers in the markets, and these are items they chose, in no particular order.

Read the rest of this entry »

Shipping ahoy: Mending broken hearts and noses in Tehran

‘There is no place like Iran in the world,
Iran is the heart of the world,
And we are people of heart’.

So went the poem quoted by the master of ceremonies at the conference held by the National Iranian Tanker Company in Tehran, the day after nuclear sanctions were lifted. Iran the heart of the world? That may be stretching the point a little but there’s no doubt something significant has happened here over the last couple of days.

Read the rest of this entry »

Grow a tree, burn a tree…a rethink of biomass philosophy

A re-evaluation of biomass for electricity generation appears a certainty, and the evolution of sustainability criteria is likely to retard market growth, just as it did for biofuels, although their implementation will run into industry and political resistance.

However, the experience of biofuels and doubts over biomass-fired power generation raise a broader question. The world has a functioning energy system in the production of food. Read the rest of this entry »

Against the grain: Agriculture grapples with price pressures

The gathering storm swirling around commodity markets augers of troubled times ahead. For agriculture, beset by the common concerns of currency fears, counterparty risk, an increased regulatory environment and once-bitten-twice-shy financial institutions, the climate is compounded by very real and entirely unique challenges.

Read the rest of this entry »