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December 15, 2010 When the media refer to crude oil, they always talk about 'Brent'
Historically, Brent crude was the major production grade in the North Sea and as such, became what in trading terms is called a “marker grade”. This means that when oil prices were published, rather than publishing all the different types of crude oil from the North Sea one price was published as an indicator of the value of oil in the North Sea. With the consolidation of oil trading around London and Rotterdam, Brent Crude became a marker grade for Europe and is now seen as THE benchmark crude price around the world. Clearly, our American cousins didn’t like this so created their own marker grade called WTI (West Texas Intermediate) – another type of crude, this time from the Gulf of Mexico.
This question comes from Sally-Anne Lewis in Northampton