Four years ago, Mexico ended the 75-year monopoly of state oil company Pemex and replaced Mexico’s state-owned utility company. The Mexican government established its first independent power producer market; encouraged investment, innovation, and competition from around the world; and liberalized the value chain from energy generation to storage facilities and petrol stations.
In 2013, Gartner elaborated a concept that they called the “digital business” and defined it as “…the creation of new business designs by blurring the digital and physical worlds…promis(ing) to usher in an unprecedented convergence of people, business and things that disrupts existing business models.”
Global commodity markets are more complex and volatile than ever. Commodity market participants can no longer afford to wait days or weeks to understand market changes, analyze alternatives, and make decisions. The key to making the most profitable decisions lies in the data businesses are generating, but current systems cannot analyze the volume, variety, and velocity of data generated in a timeframe that is useful.
If you follow technologies serving the commodities markets, you will have likely heard of ‘blockchain’. And if you have heard of it, but are still confused about what it might mean for your particular niche of the industry, you’re probably not alone. These days, it seems that many experts, both inside and outside the industry, are holding up blockchain as the panacea to improve any number of commercial processes, from wholesale trade enablement to retail inventory tracking, and everything in between. If one listens to the buzz, you could certainly conclude that blockchain is the Swiss army knife of commerce…but, is it?
Historically, information technology (IT) and operational technology (OT) have developed along separate paths. Today, these two paths are converging, especially at organizations in the manufacturing, commodity, and energy sectors. This convergence is transforming the supply chain, enabling a smarter, more dynamic, more efficient supply chain through data and advanced analytics.
The benefits of using big data and advanced analytics to make better decisions are widely accepted. Making an informed choice is better than using intuition or continuing on your current path and hoping you are on the right one. The more data you have, the more analysis you can do, and the more accurate your assessment of your choices is. But timing matters.
Copper and Iron Ore stockpiles across the world have risen steadily in the last 12 months. Recently there has been news of record levels of iron ore stockpile in China. Apparently there’s enough Iron Ore to build 13,000 Eiffel Towers. As for Copper inventories, one can look at how stockpiles have increased at LME registered warehouses. If one adds increase in bonded copper stocks held in free trade zones in China, to this mix – it will be easy to see how Copper stockpiles have risen over the last 12 months.
Microsoft, Google, Apple, Amazon, IBM, Yelp and Niantic all have something in common. They are leaders in the technology delivering augmented reality. From education, engineering, travel, and healthcare to retail shopping, gaming, and sports – industries are utilizing augmented reality to make a difference in how humans are gathering and visualizing information. How does this impact commodity trading?
According to a recent report from the McKinsey Global Institute, the data analytics revolution has started to gain momentum, but most companies are capturing only a fraction of the potential value from data and analytics. One of the biggest obstacles is data silos. Most of a company’s data is generated and stored in different systems throughout the organization, and these systems are separate, isolated programs.
Anyone observing the Australian energy market would be aware of the steep increase in electricity prices over the last few years. The rise has been so sharp that Australia has one of the highest electricity prices in the world today. Numbers show that real electricity prices for business have increased by almost 60% between 2003 and 2013.