MH Daily Bulletin: September 7

September 7, 2022 • Posted in Daily Bulletin

News relevant to the plastics industry:

At M. Holland

  • During M. Holland’s recent summer internship program, 15 bright college students worked both in-person and remotely across many departments. Click here to read more about their experiences at M. Holland and their perspectives on the plastics industry.
  • M. Holland will be attending the North American Detroit Auto Show on Sept. 14-15. This annual showcase for emerging automotive technologies will be held at Huntington Place in Detroit, Michigan. If you’re attending, please RSVP for M. Holland’s reception or contact Mike Gumbko, Strategic Account Manager, to set up a meeting with our Automotive team.
  • Market Expertise: M. Holland offers a host of resources to clients, prospects and suppliers across nine strategic markets.

Supply

  • Oil fell 3% Tuesday, reversing a two-day rally on fears of weakening demand. Futures are down 25% the past three months to the lowest level since January.
  • U.S. natural gas fell 5% to a four-week low Tuesday on forecasts of lower demand.
  • In mid-morning trading today, WTI futures were down 3.7% at $83.65/bbl, Brent was down 3.3% at $89.8/bbl, and U.S. natural gas was down 3.0% at $7.90/MMBtu.
  • China’s crude imports were down 1.1 million bpd in August compared with the year-ago period. 
  • Saudi Arabia cut oil prices for Asian and European customers for the first time in four months on Tuesday, a response to weaker demand forecasts.
  • U.S. LNG export terminals are pushing to increase capacity, triggering surging demand for feedstock gas.
  • Leading U.S. LNG exporter Cheniere Energy lost a bid to bypass pollution rules at two of its Gulf Coast terminals, which could lower production if the firm is forced to install new equipment. 
  • U.S. LNG export capacity is forecast to grow 5.7 billion cubic feet per day by 2025 with the completion of three new facilities now under construction:
U.S. LNG export capacity to grow as three additional projects begin construction

Supply Chain

Domestic Markets

  • The U.S. reported 69,828 new COVID-19 infections and 342 virus fatalities Tuesday.
  • U.S. health officials will likely start recommending COVID-19 vaccines annually, similar to flu shots. 
  • By the end of this week, over 90% of Americans will live within 5 miles of sites carrying the newest COVID-19 vaccines modified to fight fast-spreading Omicron subvariants, according to the White House. 
  • COVID-19 cases in New York state fell 9% last week.
  • The U.S. finance industry is leading the charge on winding down remote work and recalling employees to the office full-time
  • S&P Global’s composite U.S. purchasing managers’ index fell from 47.7 in July to 44.6 in August, the sharpest decline in private-sector business activity in over two years:
United States Composite PMI
  • In contrast, the U.S. services sector expanded for a second month, while measures of supply bottlenecks and price pressures eased, according to the Institute for Supply Management.
  • Bank of America says U.S. consumers and businesses are still in good financial shape despite fears of a recession, with customer spending rising 10% year over year in August while account balances were higher than in 2019. 
  • Financial pain is spreading in the junk-loan market, which saw over $6 billion in defaults in August, a two-year high.
  • Global investors continue piling into U.S. stocks as a relative shelter from economic turmoil, with U.S. equity funds pulling in money for four of the past six weeks. 
  • The U.S. Labor Secretary says immigration will need to be overhauled as a lack of available workers poses greater threats to the national economy than inflation.
  • The National Labor Relations Board is proposing a rule change allowing workers to claim they work for two employers at once, a move that could make it easier for workers to hold companies liable by their franchisees and contractors.
  • The International Brotherhood of Teamsters, one of the largest U.S. labor unions, launched a new division to focus on unionizing employees of Amazon
  • Ernst & Young executives are poised to green-light a split of its auditing and consulting businesses this week in what will be the biggest shake-up in the accounting profession in decades. 
  • U.S. officials screened 8.76 million air travelers over the four-day Labor Day weekend, the first time that holiday weekend volumes exceeded pre-pandemic levels.
  • United Airlines threatened to suspend service at New York’s JFK airport unless federal regulators review runway use and allow the carrier to increase daily operations.

International Markets

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