|Another round of Price Increases
It what comes as no surprise, more majors
jumped on the Castrol and ExxonMobil price increase
bandwagon over the last week. On February 3rd
ConocoPhillips announced it would raise prices for all
its finished lubricants by approximately 4 to 8%
effective March 1, 2006. The details of this increase
will reportedly be made available to ConocoPhillips
marketers and direct served customers on February
|Shell moves too!
Although some in the industry thought Shell might
take a pass on this round of price increases, they
didn’t. Instead, on January 30th it too announced a
According to a number of marketers this increase
bumped the price of Pennzoil, Quaker State, Wolf’s
Head and Shell lubricants. In addition, private label
products also went up. Shell’s drummed products
reportedly went up $0.28 a gallon and packaged
good moved $0.36 a gallon. Shell’s price for industrial
lubricants reportedly moved up $0.40 a gallon and
the price of its industrial gear oils and greases will be
increased by $0.06 a pound. Shell’s price increases
are said to take effect on March 1.
Although Shell is clearly moving its finished lubricant
prices up, word on the street is that Shell is
motivated to more competitively price Quaker State
in an effort to regain market share lost to gas brands
and private label.
|Valvoline ups finished lubricant prices 3.5 to 5.5%
According to industry sources Valvoline will move its
prices up 3.5 to 5.5% on its bulk, packaged, pails,
and drum lubricant product effective March 6, 2006.
Like other majors, Valvoline attributes these
increases to cost increases in base stocks, additives,
raw materials and transportation.
|The same goes for Citgo; prices move up
Just like the others, CITGO also announced a rice
increase. Effective March 6 the price of CITGO,
Mystik, unbranded and private label finished
lubricants will reportedly increase by 4 to 8%.
|Shell Meets with its Marketers- Less One
Following several meeting[less] years, Shell
concluded its long awaited marketer’s meeting it
Florida last week. According to a number of
marketers Jobbers World spoke with about the
meeting, the big news was not necessarily what
happened at the meeting. Instead it was about what
happened just prior to the meeting. The buzz on the
street is that one of Shell’s larger multibranded
jobbers in the Tennessee market did not get an invite
to the bash. Instead, what it got was notification
that its relationship with Shell was being
unceremoniously severed. This obviously deemed the
marketer persona non grata at the meeting and
caused quite a stir among those that did attend the
meeting. Many wondered what happened with the
relationship and what it might mean for them moving
|More Trouble for Base Stock Supply
The last year has not been good to the supply of
base stocks in the North American market. The most
recent blow to supply was felt on February 1, 2006
when the Excel Paralubes plant owned jointly by
ConocoPhillips and Flint Hills suffered an explosion.
Although the details of the incident have not been
disclosed, it is clear that the accident will seriously
restrict the flow of Group II base stocks from this
facility for some period of time. In fact,
ConocoPhillips declared force majeure and will be
allocating, based on existing inventories.
But this is just one in a string of unfortunate
incidences and announcements that has continued to
take its toll on the North American base stock
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