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Autumn is coming

Unsurprisingly, much of this year’s Platts 12th European Oil Storage Conference focused around IMO2020, but there were many different views on how it would impact the storage sector

2018 saw the most volatile market for the past four years, particularly in its last few months. Sanctions against Iran, the Libyan wildcard and very bleak Chinese demand have all had a role to play. Sylvain Broyer, chief EMEA economist at S&P Global Ratings kicked off proceedings by telling delegates that we all know a slowdown is coming – what we don’t yet know is how severe it will be.
The first concern Broyer has is with Chinese demand – as an example, growth in passenger car sales in China is the weakest it has been since 1990.
His second concern is the flattening of the US yield curve, which can be a warning of a potential recession. ‘Each time the curve goes flat, a year to 18 months later it is followed by a recession,’ Broyer explains.
‘We expect the yield curve to remain flat ...

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