Dealing with price volatility

With volatility in the oil market at an all time high, the importance of market intelligence cannot be underestimated. Liz Boardman talks to leading information providers to find out what’s on offer  
Who, what, when, how much and at what price?
At Argus market intelligence services underpin price assessments. With more than 200 reporters worldwide monitoring, checking and reporting on energy markets throughout the day, Argus offers a full picture of what is behind price movements.  
In addition to an end of day assessment, there is an intra-day record of deals done, plus an explanation as to why prices have moved, the latest trends and how the supply/demand outlook is shaping up.
Daily reports are produced on petroleum products, biofuels, LPG, jet fuel and other energy markets.  The Fuel Tracker product keeps British customers in touch with wider market developments.
Offices across the world enable Argus to investigate and analyse market rumours and hearsay to discover what is really going on and why. A range of analytical, higher level reports offer exclusive insight.
Sound advice to aid decision making
“Managing price volatility and reducing risk is essential to survival in the current climate,” says Fuelpricesonline founder, Basil Shrourou. “There’s also an opportunity to improve margins. A daily price movement of 1ppl or 1cpl is no longer a surprise to us. On 3rd July, we saw a movement of over 2ppl on some oil products.” 
“I honestly wouldn’t survive in this business without the help of Basil,” said
Lambes Oil managing director, Rita Lambe. He’s always available with sound advice at the other end of the line.”
Also in Ireland, Andrew Wilson, sales manager – wholesale and retail, Kelly Fuels reported:  “The service is an extremely useful tool in providing us with accurate and timely information on market movements.”
“Delivering this accurate and timely information to the downstream oil markets, helps distributors across the UKand Irelandto reduce exposure and optimise performance,” added Basil. “Being located close to the main oil trading centres in Londonand Rotterdamgives us a unique insight in to market thinking and oil intelligence.”
The WP Group has used the service for over 10 years. Managing director David Faichild reports:  “We’ve always found this service reliable and accurate; it gives our sales and procurement teams the benefit of regular up to date information to help in decision making.”
Planning ahead more effectively
A wide range of market intelligence is to be found at The Oil Market Journal (OMJ), including intraday price assessments for refined products, detailed news and trend analysis.
Live prices for heating oil, diesels and petrol are delivered through the trading day via OMJ’s website, ticker, mobile website, text and email messaging service.
Each morning, the OMJ daily report provides clients with news and analysis on what is driving oil prices.  Enabling clients to plan more effectively, a weekly Energy Roadmap report gives a comprehensive overview of the fundamental and technical outlook for the week ahead.
Making sound business decisions
Platts publishes news, research, commentary, market data/analysis and price assessments on a daily basis. Its products and services include newsletters and reports, geospatial data and maps, conferences and a weekly television programme broadcast in the US and online. Information and market insights ‘help customers to make sound trading and business decisions and enable the markets to perform with greater transparency and efficiency.’
Having reported on the European oil products market for over 20 years, the research/consulting services of Wood Mackenzie are designed to enhance business performance and inform strategic planning/investment decisions.
A downstream oil service provides in-depth research on the European oil supply chain with country/company analysis, monthly prices and margins reporting.  A monthly Market View report enables users to monitor monthly prices, marketing margins and demand data for key fuels, benchmark fuel prices/margins across 26 national markets.
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