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Platts London Oil Forum 2015

Over 500 participants attended this year’s London Oil Forum at which Platts and the oil industry shared our views on the key trends and key developments affecting the global oil markets.

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  1. As Platts editors, analysts, and news reporters talked with London Oil Forum delegates over breakfast, one thing was clear to all: with oil prices having plummeted in January to six-year lows, this was a historic time for the industry. The chart below neatly illustrates why the price question was the top of the agenda.
  2. The downturn has clearly affected the financial fortunes of oil producers big and small across the globe, with billions of dollars being wiped off corporate share prices.
  3. All eyes, therefore, where on Andrew Bonnington, editorial director for Europe and Africa, and Jorge Montepeque, Platts director of pricing, who delivered the keynote speeches on the Global Outlook for Oil.
  4. Bonnington focused on the impact of the huge oversupply of crude in markets, the growth in demand for US gasoline, and the surprise upturn in fortunes for European refiners. Montepeque's presentation looked at the broad state of the industry, and raised a fundamental question: is volatility in oil prices here to stay for the foreseeable future? He also outlined the changing dynamics of US oil production, and the astonishing cost to the industry of lower oil prices.
  5. In response to what might make oil prices rebound, Montepeque reminded the audience of an old adage:
  6. Though prices have ticked up slowly to around $57/b, this has perhaps sown ever more confusion among the market. Indeed, in this blog piece to accompany the forum, Platts web content chief Jamie McDuell asks whether we are witnessing a “dead cat bounce," or if oil markets are finally finding some equilibrium.
  7. Taking the pulse of delegates at the forum was Platts roving reporter Maurice Geller. In the following video, he polls some industry players on the big questions facing the markets: the outlook for oil prices, the ongoing scenario of oversupply, what groups within the oil industry are being hardest hit by the low price environment — and who's benefiting.
  8. Platts London Oil Forum 2015: the industry gives its perspectives on the market
  9. On the day of the forum, Russian President Vladimir Putin weighed in on the discussion on prices. He acknowledged that the dramatic fall in international oil prices is having a huge impact on the Russian economy.
  10. Full heads and stomachs: after Bonnington and Montepeque's presentations, the delegates foraged for some well-earned tea, coffee and pastries.
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