MH Daily Bulletin: December 6

December 6, 2022 • Posted in Daily Bulletin

News relevant to the plastics industry:

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  • Oil fell 3% Monday after data from the U.S. service sector bolstered the Federal Reserve’s aggressive course of monetary tightening, potentially hurting fuel demand.
  • Oil futures were down in mid-day trading today, with WTI down 4.0% at $73.83/bbl and Brent down 4.2% at $79.21/bbl. U.S. natural gas was down 2.6% at $5.43/MMBtu.
  • The average U.S. gasoline price fell to $3.403 per gallon Monday, down 43 cents the past month.
  • California launched a special legislative session to consider levying penalties on the oil industry for alleged price-gouging after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
  • Saudi Arabia lowered most oil prices for its main market of Asia to a 10-month low, a sign that demand remains fragile due to lockdowns in China.
  • Venezuelan oil production rose 16% from September to October and will likely keep climbing once Chevron expands its operations there. The country’s oil exports are expected to finance 63% of its government budget next year.
  • U.S. jet fuel consumption remains below 2019 levels despite an almost complete rebound in passenger volumes, a sign that airlines are consolidating flights to save on labor and fuel costs:
Less U.S. jet fuel consumption on average in 2022 than in 2019

Supply Chain

Domestic Markets

  • The U.S. reported 51,244 new COVID-19 infections and 207 virus fatalities Monday. The daily average of new cases is up 28% from two weeks ago. 
  • Average COVID-19 infections in New York City are up by almost 1,000 per day since Thanksgiving.
  • COVID-19 statistics are rising in Connecticut and New Hampshire.
  • Some 10% of Texas hospitals are reportedly at risk of closing due to fallout from the pandemic’s surge of COVID-19 patients and inadequate state aid.
  • Pfizer formally requested U.S. regulators to approve its Omicron-tailored booster shot for children as young as six months old.
  • The Federal Reserve is expected to raise its benchmark interest rate by 0.5 percentage points next week, while elevated wage pressures could lead to a larger terminal rate above 5% next year, analysts say. 
  • A key index of activity in the U.S. service sector unexpectedly rose from 54.4 to 56.5 in November, the biggest gain in 11 months:
United States ISM Non Manufacturing PMI
  • U.S. factory orders jumped by a larger-than-expected 1% from September to October, led by demand for transportation equipment, particularly aircraft.
  • The U.S. trade deficit rose 5.4% in October to a four-month high as exports fell for the second straight month due to falling energy prices and the effects of the strong U.S. dollar.
  • There are now 1.7 unfilled U.S. jobs for every job seeker, according to the latest data, a smaller proportion than in recent months:
U.S. Job Openings Edge Down, Still Outnumber Jobless By Far

International Markets

Euro Area Retail Sales MoM
  • British consumer spending ticked up last month, according to surveys, while retail sales rose 4.1% from a year ago:
United Kingdom BRC Retail Sales Monitor YoY
  • Real global wages fell for the first time on record in 2022, according to the United Nations:
Global Wages Take a Hit As Inflation Eats Into Paychecks

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