I have a question: what would you do…Buy or Hold?

“Go not where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

You are a Community Buyer – it means you buy stuff for communities – and so here we are at buying day once again – lots of orders, new counties covered by different RCCs and even more suppliers to wrangle with…it can all get very entertaining because today the product is heating OIL – aka kerosene.

So I have a question: what would you do? Given the national and international events it is rather surprising that the wholesale market for kerosene trundled down a little this week and the price closed down last night. You wonder if it will fall more, but:

    • then you look at the white stuff that fell on the ground in some of the 10 counties we buy for today, the frost that the rest of them got, and you wonder if winter finally arrived (finally giving the suppliers a busier order book and a reason to manipulate prices up). You check the long range forecast…interesting…!
    • your eye turns back to the Strait of Hormuz, well not actually to it – you know what I mean – but to the constantly shifting postures of Iran, the US, the EU and the OIL traders’ own profit hunting take on it.
    • you reflect on Petroplus plummeting into receivership this week – after flirting with it for weeks – and whilst you wonder how a business that deals in OIL can be run into the ground (a little like a casino going bust in Las Vegas – a very bizarre sight to behold) you are aware that the loss of a critical refinery and supply stream for the UK is going to make an impact. But which way will it impact?
    • then you hear there is a Jet tanker driver strike out of Immingham (you’d heard about that right?)…more to consider

and your gut is beginning to tell you what?  Buy today or hold till early next week?

This is what we are going to do: the market report at 9.30 am shows it is up already…we’ll wait till the next full one at 11.30 am and then decide but I would be very surprised if we didn’t buy today. However, the bit that makes us unique is that we have the services of a true industry expert – with a philanthropic heart – and because we will receive market intelligence as it happens we might push it right to 5pm or later. At that point we definitely know what direction the market will go Monday and, because we we can still have today’s prices, we can choose to buy or hold.

Maybe there is a better question than what would you do: why do you buy anything on your own?  Whether it is heating OIL or anything else the power is with the group…we are leaving our own trail.