The Commodity Trading Industry

Commodity trading is changing

The commodity trading industry faces a range of global challenges that affect its business and risk environment. Digitization and new technological apps are disrupting business models. Geopolitics and international sanctions are adding volatilely and complexity to the markets. Increased public exposure and shifting consumer patterns demand more sustainable corporate responsiveness. The industry needs a new generation of business leaders that have the courage and the creative skills to deal with the challenges and complexities of multinational trading operations along every step of the transaction.

 

Dilemmas and opportunities

The volatile and rapidly changing business environment comes with opportunities as well as dilemmas. How can commodity trading firms adapt to these changes, seize the opportunities and what does this require from you? First, this requires advanced analytical knowledge on the fundamentals, the risks and the key drivers of change, whether technological or regulatory, in the market and along the value chain. You need to be able to think transversally across the various business lines of the firm and along every step of the trade transaction. Second, this requires leadership skills. Can you make hard analytical trading decisions, while understanding the often chaotic conditions in the origination? How to reconcile generic sustainable development goals of the firm with short term trading opportunities and positions? Can you negotiate an ideal outcome in multi-actor games? Can you address moral and ethical dilemmas, concerning certain trades, investments and practices? Third, this requires the right attitude. Mental courage is needed as a (young) leader in combination with analytical knowledge in order to deal with dilemmas, seize opportunities and think strategically ahead in the interest of the firm. How to convince your team and your superiors and how to deal with defeat?