Commodity Technology Advisory is the premier analyst and consulting firm following commodity trading and risk management markets and technologies. The two managing partners, with more than sixty years of experience between them, write blog articles on the CTRMCenter (www.ctrmcenter.com) and also publish a variety of research and white papers. This book is a selection of some of the more important blog and newsletter articles written by Commodity Technology Advisory, edited and presented as a review of the E/CTRM software markets for 2014. The articles are presented in date order and were all originally published on the CTRMCenter.
2014 in retrospect was a challenging year in which regulatory uncertainty added cost and burden to an industry already facing rising costs in many areas. The overall economic conditions remained challenging, and commodity prices generally lost their upward impetus as demand weakened and supply grew. The banks and financial traders were pushed out of the commodity trading business as regulations bit hard and were replaced to some extent by private and less transparent trading firms. At the same time, many commercial and industrial users of commodities, stung by volatile wholesale prices and weak retail markets, began to take a larger interest in commodity management. Overall, the result seems to have been a year in which CTRM and related software purchases were steady rather than growing, and the average size of a deal continued to drop as there were very few top tier buyers in the market.