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The Year is Off to an Interesting Start

Additive and Now Base Oil Increases

As discussed in the December 27th issue of JobbersWorld, the big four lubricant additive manufacturers recently announced price increases in the range of 5 to 8%. The increases impact the cost of both VI and DI additives and when taken together, they bump the cost of goods to manufacturer motor oils up by roughly 8 to 10 cents per gallon (cpg). Likewise it increases the cost of most other lubricants at amounts dependent on the product types, treat rates and other variables. But there is more.

In addition to additive price increases, the new year also started off with announced increases in the price of base oil. Although additional increases are likely, those already announced in 2018 move the price of some of the workhorse base oils up by close to 10 cents a gallon.

With the price of both base oils and additives going up at roughly the same time and collectively adding at least another 20 cpg to the cost of good, you can be sure lubricant blenders and marketers are working their spreadsheets and evaluating various courses of action. And beyond taking into account the higher price of base oil and additives, you can be sure increases in packaging, transportation costs and others are also being reviewed.

So once again, hang on to your hats, 2018 looks like it’s off to an interesting start.

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