MH Daily Bulletin: February 8

February 8, 2023 • Posted in Daily Bulletin

News relevant to the plastics industry:

At M. Holland

  • M. Holland is exhibiting at MD&M West in Anaheim through tomorrow, Feb. 9. Stop by Booth #4115 to meet our Healthcare team and discuss how M. Holland’s line of medical-grade resins can help you develop safe and effective medical products and packaging.


  • Oil climbed 3% Tuesday following less hawkish comments on interest rates from the head of the U.S. Federal Reserve.
  • In mid-morning trading today, WTI futures were up 1.0% at $77.88/bbl, Brent was up 0.7% at $84.27/bbl, and U.S. natural gas was down 1.3% at $2.55/MMBtu.
  • U.S. crude stocks likely dipped by 2.184 million barrels last week, countering several weeks of builds, according to the American Petroleum Institute.
  • Public transport and refinery supplies in France were disrupted Tuesday as trade unions led a third wave of nationwide strikes against pension reform.
  • Norway’s Equinor recorded a record $28.7 billion in profits last year, triple the prior year, despite a slight drop in production.
  • TotalEnergies earned $36.2 billion last year, double its net income in 2021.
  • U.S. crude production will rise this year while demand is expected to stay flat, according to the Energy Information Administration.
  • Coal and natural gas will account for 98% of U.S. capacity retirements this year, researchers say:
Coal and natural gas plants will account for 98% of U.S. capacity retirements in 2023
  • Russia’s use of ship-to-ship crude transfers has soared since Europe banned seaborne imports in December.
  • Industrial gas giant Linde forecast higher earnings for 2023 and said it plans to invest up to $9 billion over the next three years in clean energy projects.
  • Indiana and Ohio are set for a surge in solar projects this year, which could make them among the top solar-producing states in the U.S.
  • The value of global markets for traded CO2 hit a record $909 billion last year, according to Refinitiv.

Supply Chain

  • The death toll from Monday’s earthquakes in Turkey and Syria soared above 11,000.
Turkey: 20 Earthquakes in Two Days

Domestic Markets

  • The chair of the Federal Reserve acknowledged encouraging signs of disinflation but warned that recent robust jobs data could push the central bank toward a higher terminal interest rate than traders expect.
  • The U.S. posted a $948.1 billion trade deficit last year, the largest on record. The deficit widened 10.5% for the month of December.
United States Balance of Trade
  • A leading poll on U.S. consumer confidence rose 6.6% in February but remained negative for an 18th consecutive month.
United States IBD/TIPP Economic Optimism Index
  • The tight market for hourly wage workers has employers raising pay rates and improving working conditions for migrant employees.
  • U.S. farm incomes this year are expected to fall for the first time since 2019 due to higher production expenses and falling prices for commodity crops.
  • In the latest news from quarterly earnings season:
    • DuPont beat quarterly projections and said it expects improved results in the second half of the year, primarily as a result of China’s reopening.
    • Royal Caribbean says it is set for record bookings this quarter after posting a smaller-than-expected loss in the fourth quarter.
    • Hertz posted record profit of $2.1 billion last year on a recovery in corporate and leisure travel.
    • Chipotle saw restaurant visits plunge 10.2% in the fourth quarter, leading to disappointing sales and profits.
  • Zoom Video Communications will lay off 1,300 employees, or 15% of its workforce, following a pandemic-fueled growth spurt.
  • eBay announced plans to lay off 500 employees globally, or roughly 4% of its workforce.
  • Boeing will cut about 2,000 jobs, primarily in finance and human resources, as it makes way for a flurry of manufacturing and engineering hiring.
  • Delta Air Lines will raise employee pay by 5% amid an industrywide shortage of workers.
  • Holcim AG, the world’s biggest cement-maker, agreed to buy U.S. roofing systems manufacturer Duro-Last in a deal worth $1.29 billion.
  • Niche companies that helped buyers gain an edge during the hyper-competitive pandemic housing boom are now stuck with hundreds of homes they acquired on behalf of clients who walked from deals.

International Markets

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