Russia overtakes the US in wheat exports… WSJ

by Jim Colburn • Monday, September 24, 2018

When I worked at the USDA in the early 80’s, we tried to figure out how much wheat the USSR needed to import… Here is the WSJ:

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East Coast refiners receiving more domestic crude from the Gulf Coast… EIA

by Jim Colburn • Friday, September 21, 2018

From the EIA’s Today in Energy, here

“Since mid-2017, the East Coast has been receiving as much crude oil by tanker and barge from the Gulf Coast as it has by rail from the Midwest. In April, the volume of crude oil transported by tanker and barge from the Gulf Coast to the East Coast reached the highest level since mid-2014. At the same time, crude oil shipped to the East Coast by rail from the Midwest has fallen 77% from its peak in late 2014. These changes in crude oil shipments, as well as the mix between foreign and domestic crude oil inputs to East Coast refineries, have followed price movements in crude oil markets.

Changes to U.S. crude oil transportation infrastructure in the past three years, such as expanded pipeline capacity out of the Midwest (defined as Petroleum Administration for Defense District 2) and increased availability of coastwise-compliant shipping in the Gulf Coast (PADD 3), have altered the costs of transporting crude oil domestically.”

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WTI put spreads?

by Jim Colburn • Friday, September 21, 2018

What looked like a large volume put spread traded yesterday in WTI options…  Around 18,000 November 66/65 puts traded yesterday… Note the change in open interest below, indicating a likely roll up to the 66 strike…

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Chart book… The Daily Shot

by Jim Colburn • Wednesday, September 19, 2018

It’s always worthwhile to take a look at the Wall Street Journal’s “The Daily Shot” here…  And, here are two of many interesting charts:

This was everyone’s darling just a short time ago:

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OPEC net oil revenues… EIA

by Jim Colburn • Tuesday, September 18, 2018

The EIA’s Today in Energy has some nice charts showing OPEC revenues here:


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Hedge Fund Performance… Ritholtz

by Jim Colburn • Monday, September 17, 2018

Barry Ritholz, Bloomberg, suggests some reasons why hedge funds have underperformed the S&P, here and here…  His charts tell the tale:

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Tale of Two Oil Markets (revisited)… Bloomberg

by Jim Colburn • Sunday, September 16, 2018

Here is Jessica Summers, Blooomberg, on the divergence of Brent and WTI oil prices:

“Hedge funds’ net-long position — the difference between bets on higher prices and wagers on a drop — in Brent rose 5.6 percent to 440,074 contracts, ICE Futures Europe data show for the week ended Sept. 11. That’s the highest level in two months. Longs rose, while shorts slid to the lowest since May.

Meanwhile, the net-long position in WTI crude declined 5.1 percent to 346,327 futures and options, according to the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission. Longs slid 5 percent, while shorts dipped 3.2 percent.”


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India buys less oil from Iran… Reuters

by Jim Colburn • Friday, September 14, 2018

Market participants are trying to figure out how much Iranian oil will be sold after November… Here is Nidhi Verma, Reuters  on Indian purchases:



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100 million Euro loss in Nordic power market.. FT

by Jim Colburn • Thursday, September 13, 2018

Phil Stafford and David Sheppard, Financial Times, write, here:

(my bold)

“The catalyst for the trading loss was a series of backfiring bets on the price difference between German and Nordic power markets, according to multiple sources in the industry. Mr Aas’s trades were positioned for the gap between the two to narrow, but instead it widened sharply to a level 17 times larger than normal. That move was triggered, in part, by a jump in the price of carbon allowances in Europe that have been the best performing commodity so far this year and a source of bumper profits for hedge funds and investment banks. Rising carbon prices, which are trading at a decade high, have dragged up natural gas and electricity markets in continental Europe. At the same time, a forecast of wetter than previously anticipated weather in the Nordic region, where hydropower is a big contributor to electricity supplies, pushed prices on the so-called Nordpool market far lower.”

Isn’t that the way it always happens?  (The market moves some multiple of “normal”.)

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Petroleum Supply/Demand Balance.. EIA

by Jim Colburn • Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Here is the EIA’s take on petroleum supply/demand going forward:

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