The evolution of the Oil Market over time has changed the way that traders trade it. The market has evolved from short-term trading to trading with extended horizons. In the past, there was no effective way for oil companies to set prices for future delivery, and their decisions were left to the spot market. The result was price volatility, which made investors wary of the market. Now, the price of oil moves in cycles that span months to years. The oil market is highly volatile, with the US dollar falling more than 30 percent in the past year. However, the recent surge in price of oil has caused some investors to seek alternative investments. The crude oil market has undergone significant changes in recent years. For example, US shale production has declined by over a third. In addition, the price of crude oil soared by nearly 50% since early 2017. In response to this spike in price, the price of Brent hit $70 per barrel, and the U.S. vows to defend the Saudis. The Oil Market has grown into a multi-faceted industry with a range of trading instruments. The formal futures markets operate alongside more sophisticated forward paper markets. Option and over-the-counter swap markets provide a tailor-made service, while commodity-specific forward paper exchanges provide a more liquid market. Furthermore, physical traders use financial instruments to fix prices independently of delivery. It is important to understand the oil market and the risks that can arise from it.