// AST – IMS - [DMinute_ROS]

Nafta: an oil company had to lower prices to not be out of market

Axion had been the first to increase prices during the last batch of increases at the beginning of the month, with an increase of between 4 and 7%, with the highest percentage for diesel. It was followed by Shell, with an average of 4.8%. But when it was YPF’s turn last weekend, it surprised the market with a 2.5% rise, half as much as its rivals.

Thus, for a week, there were differences of up to two pesos between the products of one and another oil, something never seen, as they have in the sector. “There are always price differences for brands, but one thing is 40 or 60 cents and another 1.50 or 2 pesos, a gap that had not been registered at least in recent years,” they say in Cecha, the camera that nuclea to service stations.

The gap means that customers seeking price are inclined towards the state oil company, which already has 57% of the market. So, there were two scenarios: that, faced with a transfer of consumers from other brands, YPF could not absorb more market share and increase its prices or that the rest would lower them so as not to be so outdated and lose market.

Thus, from this Saturday, Axion decided to lower the value of diesel in the City of Buenos Aires, which was what had risen the most and also selectively adjust the prices of gasoline and diesel oil in the interior, according to the situation of each locality. and the competition. For example, in CABA they adjusted the value of premium diesel by 2.14%, from $ 42.07 to $ 41.17. Elsewhere, the percentage of decline was greater.

The Axion price adjustment takes place in a context of low consumption. In September, the last data available, the fall was 6.6% year-on-year and in Cecha they estimate that this value was repeated in October. The most hit product is premium naphtha, which in September fell 27%.

In the middle, in addition, the price of oil and the dollar, two of the variables monitored by oil companies, continue to fall. The value of Brent’s barrel touched its minimum level in seven months on Friday and closed at US $ 70.14, while the dollar wholesaler -which quoted at $ 35.40- is one step away from touching the lower band established in the agreement with the IMF. Anyway, the companies say they still have a 9% delay with respect to those values ​​because they could not increase enough in the year to compensate the devaluation of the peso.

November was the 14th price adjustment in the year. Fuels accumulate a rise of 65%, against more than 100% that raised the dollar.

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