My goal for as long as I can keep it up: Refrain from using the word crash to describe typical fluctuations in the energy market. During one particularly brutal period of John Rockefeller’s capital planning life, he saw the price of oil fluctuate between $0.10 and $10.00. Ten cents! Ten dollars! That adds some perspective to the current–correction?–in the price of oil that has seen the commodity go from $100+ barrel in the past few years to the $40s today.
But a study of the oil markets will give you a newfound appreciation for Benjamin Graham’s margin of safety–getting a good entry price really does protect your from darn everything. Imagine if, in 2008 and 2009, you saw Royal Dutch Shell price’s decline into the $30s as the price of oil got cheap and the backdrop of an economic crisis made the stock cheaper than long-term projection of oil fundamentals warrant.