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Commodities Focus

S&P Global Commodity Insights analysis of key news and pricing issues from across the global shipping, natural gas, power, petrochemicals, agriculture, and coal markets.

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Asian naphtha rebounds from 11-year low crack but trade concerns remain

Refineries worldwide have been consuming more light sweet crude oil, resulting in an oversupply of light distillates products market. In the second quarter, naphtha was the worst performer across the barrel in Asia. The Asian naphtha crack against ICE Brent crude fell close to an 11-year low to...


3 Jul 2019

Rank #1

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Global Energy Transition: What are the key drivers and hindrances?

The energy transition has become the key talking point among energy and commodity market participants, marking what seems to be the beginning of a paradigm shift in power generation. And who better than S&P Global Platts experts in Global Power to analyse key drivers such as policy, the...


18 Oct 2019

Rank #2

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Sunny side up: rising prices in the Black Sea sunflower oil market

In today's Commodities Focus podcast, join EMEA agriculture pricing lead Robert Beaman, oilseeds editor George Duke and global market development manager Piero Carello as they discuss how the global vegetable oil complex is pressuring sunflower oil prices upwards, despite the bumper sunflower harvests in the Black Sea region.


28 Nov 2019

Rank #3

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Part 2: Plunging oil prices, pandemic having dramatic downstream impact

With oil prices off roughly 30% in the past week in face of falling demand triggered by the coronavirus pandemic, impacts in the downstream are far-reaching. Changes in crude flows, refinery operations, LNG development and petrochemical price dynamics all are newly in play. Editors from S&P Global Platts and S&P Global Market Intelligence explore market and industry dynamics triggered by the extreme volatility in world oil markets, with a special focus on downstream us oil, natural gas, LNG and petrochemical operations. Also check out Part 1: Volatility in global markets creates havoc for upstream US oil, gas and LNG


13 Mar 2020

Rank #4

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Asian gasoline market Q4 outlook

The last quarter of the year is seasonally weak for Asian gasoline, but the attacks on Saudi Arabia's oil facilities are proving to be largely supportive of the market. S&P Global Platts editors Mark Tan and Wendy Cheong share insights on the region's gasoline supply and the factors that could...


3 Oct 2019

Rank #5

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A conversation with Goldman Sachs's Jeff Currie

Global demand for commodities has been obliterated. From copper as a barometer of the global economy to oil as a potential inflation hedge, no commodity has escaped the impact of coronavirus. Jeff Currie, head of commodities research at Goldman Sachs and someone who identified the commodities supercycle in the 2000s, did a Q&A with the London news team at S&P Global Platts on 7th April hosted by Paul Hickin and Andy Critchlow. He discussed what a potential supply and demand recovery could look like and what the OPEC+ deal could mean for crude markets. In a wide-ranging discussion he brought his insight to LNG, the broader metals complex, shale oil and energy transition too.


15 Apr 2020

Rank #6

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Global and US solar outlook: Uncertainties and market impacts

The energy transition has become an increasingly important driver of energy and commodity markets, as power generation undergoes a profound transformation across the globe. In this podcast, Bruno Brunetti, S&P Global Platts head of global power planning, analytics; and Morris Greenberg, senior manager, North American power, analytics; discuss with Amy Gasca, manager of power pricing, the global and US solar outlook, along with key drivers of solar PV capacity additions and the impact of solar penetration on power markets.


12 Nov 2019

Rank #7

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Heading into summer, California power forwards soar, ERCOT reserve margin narrows

Last summer, ERCOT saw record power demand, while California power prices reached an all-time high. With another summer coming up, S&P Global Platts senior pricing specialists Kassia Micek, Kelli Ainsworth and Jeff Zhou discuss ISO summer load and resource expectations and July and August...


7 Jun 2019

Rank #8

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Gastech puts LNG at center stage as market presses North American project developers for decisions

S&P Global Platts senior natural gas writers Harry Weber and J. Robinson preview with natural gas managing editor Joe Fisher next week’s Gastech conference, which will bring together in Houston global market participants in the midstream, upstream and LNG sectors. The annual confab comes...


12 Sep 2019

Rank #9

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EnVision Forum fosters dialogue on fuel transitions

FERC Chairman Neil Chatterjee launched the EnVision Forum in his home state of Kentucky on October 21. The daylong event drew a diverse crowd of power and natural gas stakeholders, including CEOs, utility regulators, consumer advocates and landowners, to discuss challenges posed by the changing...


24 Oct 2019

Rank #10

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Texas natural gas, power prices diverge during an August for the record books

ERCOT power demand smashed record after record durin August, boosting spot prices to record highs and real-time power prices to $9,000/MWh. Natural gas prices, however, did not see any uplift from record power demand. Amy Gasca, manager of the Platts power pricing team; Kelsey Hallahan, senior...


6 Sep 2019

Rank #11

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US hydrogen market emerging around calls for decarbonization

As more US municipalities set ambitious goals to cut greenhouse gas emissions from power generation, transportation and other sectors, use cases for hydrogen are emerging that include fuel cells, direct burning in gas-fired turbines and energy storage applications. With these trends in mind, Mitsubishi Hitachi Power Systems is launching the Advanced Clean Energy Storage project in central Utah that seeks to develop 1,000 MW of clean energy storage using hydrogen stored in underground salt caverns. S&P Global Platts discussed the project and other US power market developments with MHPS Americas President and CEO Paul Browning.


18 Dec 2019

Rank #12

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Back in black: The oil market’s way forward

After a historic collapse into negative territory, oil prices have rebounded on the backs of OPEC+ production cuts and the first glimmers of an economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. Will the upward trend be sustainable? S&P Global Platts news editors examine the latest market forecasts and the dynamics influencing the OPEC+ alliance’s ability to bring down the global surplus of oil.


19 May 2020

Rank #13

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Uncertainty remains for US LNG project developers following initial China trade deal

S&P Global Platts senior natural gas writer Harry Weber and S&P Global Market Intelligence natural gas reporter Corey Paul discuss with Platts head of Americas gas news Joe Fisher the outlook for US LNG export projects following the initial trade agreement that the US and China signed January 15. The agreement keeps tit-for-tat tariffs from escalating, but existing Chinese duties on imports of US LNG remain. Weak Asian LNG prices have added a new wrinkle to commercial talks for American developers.


24 Jan 2020

Rank #14

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A respite without a resolution for commodity markets after initial US-China trade deal

An initial trade agreement between the US and China signed by officials from both countries January 15 could change the landscape for commodities markets that have been roiled by punishing tit-for-tat tariffs over the last 18 months.


22 Jan 2020

Rank #15

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Pandemic oil markets have products tankers buzzing

Pandemic oil demand destruction has converted clean products tankers into offshore storage containers as onshore storage is approaching tank top. Forced floating storage as a result of discharge problems has the products tanker markets buzzing arguably at a faster pace at present than their larger sisters on the crude side. Barbara Troner, Marieke Alsguth and Chris To of the S&P Global Platts shipping team put their heads together with Platts’ Beth Brown to explore the dynamics of current products forward pricing structures and floating storage opportunities.


24 Apr 2020

Rank #16

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The Wuhan Ban: The coronavirus and IMO 2020 stifle the shipping markets

We’re one month into the new IMO 2020 sulphur cap and Container Editor George Griffiths and Dry Bulk Editor Sam Eckett look at how the container and dry bulk freight markets are reacting at this time, whilst keeping a fairweather eye on Lunar New Year and the rapid spread of coronavirus which is eating into customer confidence in the freight world.


30 Jan 2020

Rank #17

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Part 1: Volatility in global markets creates havoc for upstream US oil, gas and LNG

The ongoing and extreme volatility in world oil markets has triggered a range of industry dynamics in the US. Editors from S&P Global Platts and S&P Global Market Intelligence examine the latest market news, with a particular focus on upstream US oil, gas and LNG operations. Coming soon: Part 2: Downstream impacts


12 Mar 2020

Rank #18

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Remember, remember the coal of November

London-based editors Jeffrey McDonald, Sarah Matthews and Joseph Clarke discuss the mood of key sectors within the Atlantic basin thermal coal markets amid cheap gas prices and tumbling demand from Europe and the Mediterranean. The mood is bearish, especially for US and Colombian producers. Russian...


5 Nov 2019

Rank #19

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COVID-19 crushing China's steel and iron ore demand

Steel and raw materials markets have been particularly affected by the coronavirus, as two of the key demand sectors – construction and manufacturing – remain in limbo awaiting workers to return. Meanwhile, deliveries of raw materials have been held up by logistical constraints, while mills are tentatively starting to trade again. Paul Bartholomew, S&P Global Platts head of market insight for metals in Asia-Pacific is joined by Keith Tan, Platts senior managing editor, for steel and raw materials, and Niki Wang, who heads up the Platts iron ore pricing team to discuss the current market situation in China.


13 Feb 2020

Rank #20