U.S. natural gas storage is at a three-year low for this time of year, the result of a cold winter and high demand for exports:
Chinese refiners could lower output up to 900,000 bpd on a crash in demand from recent lockdowns. Lower demand in Asia is also keeping Europe as the top spot for LNG deliveries, where premiums are higher.
American utilities are expected to invest roughly $140 billion this year and next on replacing infrastructure and reducing carbon emissions, substantially more than any year since data collection began in 2000.
Utilities and some states are proposing installing small modular reactors (SMRs) in existing coal plants, touting the relative low cost and safety of the emerging nuclear technology.
More oil news related to the war in Europe:
Roughly 3 million bpd of Russian oil could be shut-in due to sanctions or an inability to find buyers starting in May, the International Energy Agency projected.
China’s Zhengzhou airport economic zone, a central manufacturing area that includes Apple supplier Foxconn, announced a 14-day lockdown Friday due to rising COVID-19 cases. Some iPhone and MacBook makers in Shanghai and Kunshan also halted production.
Drewry’s World Container Index of international freight rates is down 13% since about a month ago.
The Cass Freight Index, a barometer of freight volumes and market conditions, increased just 0.6% year over year in March from 1.6% in February, while first-quarter volumes slowed to a 0.4% annualized growth rate from a 4.3% increase in the fourth quarter.
Rivian’s CEO warned of a looming shortage of electric vehicle batteries due to limited production capacity and inadequate raw material supplies, noting that current capacity is less than 10% of projected demand in a decade. Rivian is forecasting that it will run at just 50% capacity this year due to ongoing shortages of key parts hampering vehicle production.
Idaho became the 27th state to report an outbreak of Avian flu, which has forced the culling of 27 million chickens and poultry in the U.S. and driven prices higher for poultry and eggs, which have experienced a near 300% increase since November.
A new investigation by the World Health Organization shows that COVID-19 has killed significantly more people than official totals indicate, estimating that roughly 15 million people had died from the virus by the end of last year, compared to the 6 million virus fatality total officially reported. At least one-third of the newly compiled deaths are estimated to have occurred in India.
Over 4.6 million refugees fled Ukraine during the first 50 days of Russia’s invasion, according to the United Nations.
China’s retail sales fell in March for the first time since 2020, dropping 3.5% from a year ago, while its jobless rate jumped to 5.8%, its highest since May 2020.
China’s imports unexpectedly fell 0.1% in March from a year earlier amid the nation’s strict pandemic measures, while its export growth slowed to 14.7% for the month, compared to a 16.3% increase in January and February.
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