Oil prices jumped 2% Tuesday as supply concerns mounted over political tensions in Eastern Europe. Crude futures were higher in late morning trading, with WTI up 2.4% at $87.67/bbl and Brent up 2.3% at $90.26/bbl. U.S. natural gas was 4.5% higher at $4.24/MMBtu.
The U.S. is in talks with major energy-producing nations to boost production of LNG that could be sent to Europe in case of emergency.
Russia, the world’s second-largest oil exporter, will ship out just 1.31 million bpd of its flagship Urals crude next month, the smallest flow since September as the nation consumes more fuel domestically.
Saudi Arabian production of dry natural gas has risen by one-third over the past decade:
France’s consumption of high-ethanol E85, made from sugar and grains, jumped by one-third last year as a surge in gasoline prices made it more attractive to consumers.
Industrial prices in Spain are rising at a record pace, up 35.9% year over year in December, led by a doubling in energy prices during the same period.
The U.S. reported 515,318 new COVID-19 infections and 2,911 virus fatalities Tuesday. Virtually all new cases are from the Omicron strain.
Higher transmission rates of the COVID-19 Omicron variant are offsetting the strain’s reduced severity, causing U.S. hospitalizations and deaths to nearly match levels of previous waves. Average daily fatalities have surpassed 2,100 for the first time since early last year.
Average COVID-19 infections in Oregon are up fivefold since Jan. 1.
The World Health Organization is urging international researchers to monitor the COVID-19 Omicron “stealth” subvariant and assess its potential for causing more severe infection. The subvariant has been seen in small numbers in parts of Asia and Europe, and two cases were reported in Washington state. Since December 6, about 100 cases have been picked up across 26 states.
Johnson & Johnson finished 2021 with its strongest quarter to date for COVID-19 vaccine sales, contributing to year-over-year corporate revenue growth as it prepares to separate its consumer-health division.
The Conference Board’s index of consumer confidence — a survey that captures future spending of U.S. households — came in at 113.8 so far this month, down several points from December.
Recent estimates show roughly 85% of the 22 million American jobs lost at the start of the pandemic have returned.
Federal Reserve officials are likely to announce a final round of bond purchases before ending the pandemic-induced stimulus program by March, when the first interest rate hike is expected to kick in.
More U.S. job hunters care more about having flexible schedules than the ability to work from home, a new survey shows.
U.S. home-price growth slowed in November, the fourth straight month of deceleration, as months of fast-rising prices pushed some buyers out of the market.
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