SemGroup's Bankruptcy - Is it a Case of Oil Price Manipulation or Erroneous Estimation of Oil Price?

Code : FCF0020

Year :
2011

Industry : Energy

Region : USA

Teaching Note:Not Available

Structured Assignment :Not Available

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Abstract: When oil prices increased in the summer of 2008 to $147 a barrel, one of the major corporate sufferers was oil pipeline giant SemGroup Holdings, a $14 billion (sales) private firm in Tulsa, US. SemGroup ended up with $3.2 billion in options trading losses, including $290 million personally controlled by the chief executive Thomas Kivisto. The company suffered huge losses as oil prices increased to record levels, undercutting the short crude futures positions the company had entered into in options trading with J. Aron & Co to hedge against its 500,000 barrels-per-day oil trading business. Finally, SemGroup filed for bankruptcy in the Delaware federal court on July 22, 2008, due to the credit crunch caused by huge margin call requirements. This case study provides enough scope for a debate on the use of qualitative and quantitative techniques in forecasting and at the same time highlights the importance of judgment, common sense, and intuition in the forecasting process which increases the managers’ potential to make better decisions.


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Pedagogical Objectives:

  • Understand the need for forecasting in modern businesses
  • Understand different quantitative or qualitative techniques of forecasting
  • Understand the factors that should be considered while selecting a forecasting technique
  • Understand the various steps involved in forecasting
  • Understand what is the role of judgment, common sense, and intuition in the forecasting process which increases the manager’s potential to make better decisions.


    Keywords : SemGroup; Goldman Sachs; Options; Acquisition; Tom Kivisto; SemStream; Trader; New York Mercantile Exchange; Barrel; Gulf Oil; Crude Trading; Foxx Transports; J. Aron & Co; Lloyd Blankfein

    Contents :
    » About SemGroup
    » Rapid Growth of the Company
    » Tom Kivisto


    Case Introduction >>


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