Makers vs Takers

“We are a price taker. We are not a price maker, unfortunately. So, as we have just re-discovered, if you are not a price maker but a price taker, your job is to control breakeven,” Total chief executive Patrick Pouyanne told the World Petroleum Congress (WPC) this week.

He was referring to the past three years when oil and gas companies (aka price takers) have had no other choice but to introduce very strict financial discipline, boost the efficiency of their operations, defer or cancel quite a few development projects and in general learn again how to survive and thrive in a lower oil price environment.

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Gazprom’s budget constraints drive sales

This is the second in a series of blogs using data from Argus Data and Downloads, which are available to Argus Direct subscribers here.

Yesterday’s blog analysed the recent increase in Russian producer Gazprom’s exports to Europe, despite weaker prices. But it is not only Gazprom that has an unorthodox supply curve — you and I do too.

There are some similarities to the backward bending labour supply curve. People at first try to work more as wages go up, but once income reaches a certain level they will start cutting hours to free up leisure time.

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Europe awash with LNG and Russian gas

This is the first of a series of blogs using data from Argus Data and Downloads, which are available to Argus Direct subscribers here.

Two stories at the start of July pointed to a large increase in Europe’s gas supply this summer and talk of a “price war”.

European LNG sendout in the second quarter rose to the highest in several years, while Russian exporter Gazprom’s sales in April-June were a record for the second quarter.

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Caught between the devil and the deep blue sea

Tanker owners are looking to rejuvenate their fleets.  Nothing new, I hear you say, ordering new ships is what owners do.

But talk of a nascent consolidation in the sector suggested things could be different this time around. Shipowners with strong enough balance sheets could be looking at other ways to expand, rather than ordering new vessels and adding to an oversupplied market.

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