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Oil prices jumped 5% Wednesday after the EU unveiled plans to phase out Russian oil within six months.
In mid-morning trading today, WTI futures were down 0.9% at $106.90/bbl, Brent was off 0.6% at $109.50/bbl, and U.S. natural gas was up 1.3% at $8.53/MMBtu.
U.S. crude inventories rose unexpectedly by 1.3 million barrels last week, according to the government. Distillate and gasoline stocks fell on strong export demand.
Shell’s first-quarter profits nearly tripled, and the company said it will take a $3.9 billion impairment charge related to assets in Russia.
Cheniere, the U.S.’s largest LNG exporter, posted a first-quarter net loss of over $865 million that it attributed to poorly performing LNG derivative instruments. The firm raised its 2022 profit forecast by 17% on strong export demand.
Roughly 20% of U.S. electricity generation can operate on multiple fuels including gas, petroleum liquids and coal, a positive indicator of supply reliability:
More oil news related to the war in Europe:
Russia’s commodity exports likely rose 2% last month, staying resilient as Asia imported more fuel at steep discounts, down to nearly $70/bbl by some reports. Analysts say Russia’s output will fall 10% once Europe’s proposed ban takes effect.
Employers are clashing with West Coast dockworkers over rising automation at U.S. ports, a potential sticking point as labor negotiations ramp up ahead of new contracts due this summer.
Ports and inland networks are facing severe capacity restraints with erratic levels of containers flowing in and out, leading to more blank sailings and slowing recent gains in schedule reliability. Ripple effects from Chinese lockdowns could extend for months, experts say.
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