In the first 2016 issue of the Commodity Markets Update, Max Schlubach’s feature article provides an update on the crude oil market. Schlubach examines four key topics affecting future crude oil supplies: Congress’ lifting of the oil export ban, the effect of shale production cuts, the deleveraging and restructuring of exploration and production companies’ balance sheets and a coordinated production cut among OPEC countries.

Meanwhile, Benjamin Durfee and Tucker Randle consider the economic conditions that have prompted an increase of steel imports into the United States and discuss how the imposition of protectionist tariffs on certain steel imports has affected the domestic market. In addition, John Secor and Ajit George discuss the necessity of a working capital adjustment mechanism in the sale of a business – a consideration that is particularly important for commodities businesses whose inventory values and short-term financing levels change daily – and look at how to go about constructing one. Finally, Alice Birnbaum sits down with Alexander Goulandris, co-founder and CEO of essDOCS, to discuss his effort to bring the digital world together with shipping, commodity trading and trade finance disciplines.