Core Established Benchmarks

Stewards of Benchmarks

S&P Global Platts benchmarks are developed through engagement with participants across the global commodity markets. Public consultations, market forums, and thousands of bilateral meetings ensure S&P Global Platts is at the forefront of evolving unique methodologies to underpin its pricing services.

S&P Global Platts constantly updates its assessments to reflect the realities of ever-changing physical markets and to help market participants manage risk around supply, demand, and pricing.

Update on Platts Dated Brent

After a period of extensive engagement with market participants, February 2022 saw Platts publish its renewed proposal to include U.S. WTI Midland into its assessment of the Brent crude oil complex, including global physical benchmark Dated Brent. The inclusion of the U.S. grade from June 2023, has been well received, with the industry acknowledging the reliable and plentiful supply that will further enhance the world’s leading crude oil benchmark. Throughout the unprecedented market volatility created by the war in Ukraine, strong liquidity and a robust methodology in the Brent complex have seen Dated Brent perform as a robust and transparent price point for the oil markets.


Platts Dated Brent
Platts Dated Brent is the world’s leading benchmark assessment of the value of physical, light North Sea crude oil.
Platts Dubai
Platts Dubai is the primary physical market pricing reference for crude oil delivered to Asian refineries from the Middle East Gulf, and has been since the 1980s.

Platts Dated Brent Future/Dubai Crude via ICE

Trading volumes cleared by ICE
(in millions)

2 4 8 6 ’18 ’20 ’21 ’19 ’15 ’16 ’17 Dubai lots (1,000 barrel lot size)Brent lots (1,000 barrel lot size) 0 2000 4000 6000 8000 21 20 19 18 17 16 15

Sources: Intercontinental Exchange;
Global Investor Group (FOW)

  • Dated Brent is seen as a bellwether for the health of the overall oil market and, furthermore, the global economy.
  • The vast majority of sour crude oil trading East of Suez is priced against the Platts Dubai benchmark. Deep financial markets are available for hedging using Platts Dubai as settlement. 
  • As one side of the Brent/Dubai spread, Platts Dubai also provides the key barometer for understanding the relative value of sweet and sour crude oil, which determines crude oil trade flows into the global oil refining system.


Platts JKM
Platts JKM is the LNG (Liquefied Natural Gas) benchmark price for spot physical cargoes referenced in contracts both in Northeast Asia and globally.

Platts JKM via ICE

Trading volumes cleared by ICE
(in thousands)

Lots (10,000 MMBtu lot size)

Sources: Intercontinental Exchange;
Global Investor Group (FOW)

  • The market for LNG is becoming more liquid, transparent, flexible, and efficient. Global LNG trade patterns are evolving rapidly. Regional gas prices have converged, and stronger LNG volumes are driving the rise of LNG as a global commodity. 
  • Platts JKM, more than a decade old, is the settlement basis of the leading LNG derivatives contracts globally. JKM continues to be used in short-term and spot LNG contracts, and its use in longer-term contracts has rapidly expanded in the last two years.


Platts Iron Ore
S&P Global Platts IODEX, which represents the value of medium-grade iron ore with 62% iron content, is the world’s leading benchmark for the steelmaking ingredient.

Platts Iron Ore via SGX

Trading volumes cleared by SGX
(in millions)

Lots (lot size dependent on product)

Source: Singapore Exchange

  • Iron ore prices experienced heightened volatility during 2020 and 2021 and hit an all-time high of $233.1 per ton in May 2021 before sharply correcting.
  • Strong steel demand in China and elsewhere combined with seasonally tight supply to drive prices higher in the first half of 2021. Since then, China’s efforts to curb its steel output have crimped demand and sent prices on a downward trajectory.

S&P Global Platts has a strong position in mature markets that continue to grow

Introducing New Price Assessments Globally

Energy Transition

In December of 2019, S&P Global Platts became the first Price Reporting Agency to launch assessments of hydrogen, which is rapidly emerging as the key fuel in energy transition and global decarbonization. S&P Global Platts’ growing suite of hydrogen assessments currently covers key points in the U.S., Canada, Northern Europe, and Japan.
Hydrogen’s ability to function as an energy store is an important solution for issues around intermittency that have limited the flexibility and utilization of renewable sources of power such as solar and wind.
Hydrogen’s potential lies in its natural abundance and the fact that it releases no harmful pollutants as it is consumed.
In January of 2021, S&P Global Platts became the first Price Reporting Agency to launch daily assessments of carbon credits, which are a key tool to drive investment into carbon reduction and removal and are quickly becoming integrated into traditional commodity trade. 
Carbon credit markets are complex and global, including a huge range of market participants, project types, and environmental factors.
Platts prices cover a range of carbon markets, including nature-based credits as well as those using technological solutions to reduce or remove emissions.  
Platts carbon credit prices form the basis for a range of new carbon accounted commodity assessments, including carbon intensity premiums for crude, zero carbon aluminum, and carbon neutral LNG. 


Recycled Plastics
S&P Global Platts is the leading provider of global price assessments for recycled plastics, covering the rapidly emerging markets for recycled polyethylene terephthalate (R-PET), recycled polyethylene (R-PE) and recycled polypropylene (R-PP).
Corporate ESG targets, governmental regulation, and consumers’ scrutiny on sustainability are accelerating the substitution of virgin plastics with recycled plastics to tackle ocean pollution, achieve a circular economy, and reduce carbon emissions.
Recycled plastics markets show an increasing disconnect to their virgin equivalents as demand soars and supply has yet to catch up, resulting in a greater need for independent price assessments and market analysis to help participants manage their risk and assess new project feasibility in the traditionally opaque yet fast changing recycled plastics markets. 
S&P Global Platts has been continuously expanding its recycled plastics coverage since the first European R-PET price assessment in 2008, with 25 new price assessments launched 2020-2021, providing much-needed transparency to support the growth of this emerging industry.


In September of 2019, S&P Global Platts acquired Live Rice Index (LRI), a global provider of information and benchmark price assessments for the rice industry, as part of S&P Global Platts’ multiyear strategic investment in agriculture markets.
Founded in 2011, LRI has established itself as the leading price reporting agency in the global rice industry. LRI offers rice price assessments, news, and analysis for rice market participants in countries including Argentina, Brazil, Egypt, India, Pakistan, Paraguay, Thailand, Uruguay, the U.S., and Vietnam.
Rice is the most important grain for human consumption worldwide, directly feeding more people than any other crop, and is forecast to grow strongly over the next 30 years, underpinned by robust production and consumption fundamentals.

Oil, Shipping

Freight Rates, Containers
S&P Global Platts publishes hundreds of daily freight rate assessments covering all major shipping markets including tankers, dry bulk, containers, and LNG. These assessments are used for physical benchmarking, and several assessments are listed by exchanges as the basis of derivatives contracts. 

Dirty Tanker USGC-UKC Aframax 70kt $/mt via ICE

Trading volumes cleared by ICE (in million tons)

Lots (lot size dependent on product)

Traded derivatives volumes are based on the Aframax U.S. Gulf-Europe oil tanker freight rate assessment (launched in 2018)

  • S&P Global Platts has assessed container freight markets since 2017 and currently publishes 22 daily container freight rates for key trade routes.
  • Freight’s role as an intrinsic part of commodity trade makes it particularly exposed to high levels of volatility. Supply chain issues related to the global pandemic have caused an increased focus on container freight markets. S&P Global Platts’ freight assessments and the associated derivatives contracts help participants manage their risk and navigate the peaks and troughs of freight markets.
  • Market participants with exposure to container freight include shipping lines, freight forwarders, brokers, manufacturers, traders, fast moving consumer goods (FMCG) companies, and retailers.

S&P Global Platts is expanding its renewable energy business and is launching new products in areas such as recycled plastics and hydrogen