OPEC and Russia-Led Oil Alliance Agree to Increase Production
An alliance of crude producers led by Saudi Arabia agreed on Wednesday to increase oil production starting in August, officials in the group said, amid signs that demand is recovering following coronavirus-related lockdowns.
Key members of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and its Russia-led allies agreed to loosen existing production caps by about 1.6 million barrels a day, partly reversing draconian output cuts enacted to stem a sharp price decline in the early days of the coronavirus pandemic.
The group officially agreed to an overall relaxation of cuts of two million barrels a day of production but required some countries that lagged in enforcing earlier cuts to reduce their output by a net 400,000 barrels a day. Those cuts will be required until the end of October.
15 states, DC will collaborate on 100% electric truck sales by 2050
Governors from 15 states and the mayor of Washington, D.C., signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to work together to ensure 100 percent of medium- and heavy-duty sales are zero-emissions (ZEV) vehicles by 2050, according to a Northeast States for Coordinated Air Use Management (NESCAUM) press release. The group has an interim target of 30 percent electric vehicle sales by 2030.
The participants will work through NESCAUM’s Multi-State ZEV Task Force, created in 2013. The task force’s latest action plan, released in 2018, focused on light-duty passenger vehicles. Under the MoU, the group will develop and implement a plan for trucks and buses.
Top Energy Stories
US crude oil inventories moved sharply lower in the week ended July 10 amid plunging imports and steady refinery demand, Energy Information Administration data showed July 15.
U.S. refineries have sustained fewer mechanical outages as production has fallen because of the coronavirus pandemic in 2020, according to data from energy intelligence service Industrial Info Resources.
Managing the balance sheet and maintaining liquidity through the COVID-19 crisis will decide who comes out the other side intact with the potential to attract new investment, says KPMG’s National Energy Leader Michael McKerracher.
Top Freight Transportation Stories
The head of the largest freight brokerage in North America says the coronavirus pandemic is resetting the U.S. trucking market, pushing some carriers out of business as companies adapt to upheaval in domestic supply chains.
The Payroll Protection Program (PPP) provided hundreds of billions of dollars for cash-starved businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic, and with many customers idled by government-mandated shutdowns, tens of thousands of trucking companies were among those standing in line for a slice of the PPP funds.
As the year progresses, the increased cost pressure on carriers from pandemic-related expenses will begin to show up in pricing discussions with shippers, J.B. Hunt President of Intermodal Darren Field said on a Thursday call with analysts. The carrier’s intermodal revenue was down 7% year over year (YoY) in the second quarter, with operating income down 14% YoY. Volume for the segment was down 2% YoY.
Top Economic Stories
New jobless claims declined by a smaller than expected margin in the Labor Department’s new report Thursday, as a surge in US virus cases threatens the pace of the labor market’s recovery.
The global economy suffered a severe contraction in the three months through June, and it is becoming clear that the strength of its recovery will depend on authorities’ success in dousing continued pandemic flare-ups.
The biggest US banks have had time to brace themselves for a wave of losses. However, they are still bracing themselves to withstand a wave of losses. Their earnings this week suggest the worst is yet to come for the American economy, and that Washington may need to provide even more support for workers and businesses.
The euro hit a 19-week high of $1.1467 on Monday, underpinned by hopes the European Union would agree on a 750 billion euro ($857.93 billion) recovery fund to help revive EU economies hit by the COVID-19 pandemic, of which 390 billion euros could be offered as grants.