Can You Predict the Fuels Market?

This week’s Convenience Matters podcast discusses how retailers can weather the ups and downs of the volatile fuels market.

May 09, 2018

ALEXANDRIA, Va. – On this week’s episode of Convenience Matters, “What’s Predictable in an Unpredictable Fuels Market?,” NACS hosts Jeff Lenard and Carolyn Schnare talk with Paige Anderson, NACS director of government relations, about the current and future fuels market means for retailers.

Motor fuel consumption in the United States is 9.2% of overall demand, and the convenience store industry fuels 80% of those motor vehicles, so when anything happens in the oil industry, it can impact the convenience store industry as well. Issues that touch the industry includes the Renewal Fuel Standard (RFS).

“The reality is our folks want as much certainty and predictability as possible,” Anderson said. “We like a lot of flexibility in the market place so we can adapt to these uncertain times and be able to the best decisions not only for our businesses but for our consumers.” With the transition to summer blend, the approaching hurricane season and the continued volatility in the Middle East, retailers are already scrambling to react to the market. “When you also have Congress and the EPA looking at the RFS … and other rules and regulations that effect the fuels market place,” retailers struggle to know how to adapt,” Anderson said.

What most people don’t realize is that legislation involving fuels impacts more than the big stakeholders of the oil, renewable fuel and ethanol producers. “Everyone has recognized on the supply side that having a diverse market place of many different fuels … is good for the consumer and good for the market place,” Anderson said. “If consumers want to buy the product, we want to sell that to them. … But we want to have the flexibility to sell whatever fuels [come our way]. … The more that we can get away from mandates and let the markets and consumers drive this, the better.”

Each week a new Convenience Matters episode is released. The weekly podcast can be downloaded on iTunes, Google Play Music and Stitcher and at Episodes have been downloaded by listeners more than 39,000 times in more than 95 countries.