GROWMARK Watches Energy Markets

Cindy Zimmerman

One of the benefits of membership in the GROWMARK cooperative system is daily information about the energy markets and recommendations on contracting fuel at different times of the year.

Harry Cooney is manager of customer risk management for GROWMARK Energy and he is constantly keeping an eye on the energy complex, especially gasoline, propane and diesel fuel. He says the primary influences on the energy market lately have been the situation in Europe, the value of the dollar and the stock market.

growmark“In the past six months to a year, there’s been a strong connection between the stock markets and the energy markets,” Cooney said. “When things look bad in Europe, then our stock market tends to fall off and when the stock market falls off the energy markets tend to fall off.” He says world events in the currency and stock markets and whether the economy is strengthening or weakening have more impact on energy markets than public policy decisions, like the blenders tax credit for ethanol and the Renewable Fuels Standard.

In the diesel market, Cooney says we are seeing strong demand and falling stocks. “Diesel stocks have fallen under the five year average for the first time in many months,” he said. “The economy is starting to come around so stocks are coming down and diesel demand is back well over the five year average after just bottoming in July.”

As propane users look ahead to contracting for 2012, Cooney says they are currently making recommendations for summer through winter of next year. “Given the somewhat tight stocks situation and the fact that crude oil tends to want to go up, it makes us want to be a buyer of propane,” he said.

Listen to my interview with Harry Cooney here: Harry Cooney Interview

Audio, Energy, Ethanol, GROWMARK, Propane