Oil prices finished higher Friday but ended the week down 5%, the steepest weekly decline since November, on signs of potential output increases from OPEC.
The potential for a diplomatic solution in Ukraine caused oil prices to drop by around $7 per barrel Monday morning, with WTI futures falling 6.9% at $101.80/bbl, Brent dipping 6.5% at $105.40/bbl and U.S. natural gas down 2.7% at $4.60/MMBtu in mid-morning trading.
The average U.S. gasoline price hit a record $4.43 Sunday, up 79 cents over the past two weeks. Gasoline accounted for about one-third of the nation’s record 7.9% increase in consumer prices last month.
The EU is preparing a fourth round of sanctions to deny Russia resources supporting its war on Ukraine, including a ban on new investment in the nation’s energy sector.
Europe could burn up to 51% more coal this year as it reduces reliance on Russian natural gas. With Russia being Europe’s largest supplier of coal, most new shipments will likely come from Colombia, South Africa, Australia, Indonesia and the U.S.
Talks to revive the U.S.’s 2015 nuclear deal with Iran and bring more of the nation’s oil to market have stalled over Russia’s involvement as an original member of the pact. The U.S. said Sunday it would not negotiate further so long as Russia is included in the talks.
Solar installations in the U.S. jumped 19% last year to a record 23.6 GW, of which nearly three quarters were large installations for utilities and other big firms. Installations will decline this year due to inflation and supply chain disruption, analysts say.
More supply chain news related to the war in Europe:
A new White House order will ban $550 billion of American luxury goods exports to Russia and $1.2 billion of Russian imports of seafood, vodka and diamonds per year.
Latvia-based vodka distiller Stolichnaya will stop sourcing ethanol from Russia and will change its name to Stoli as part of an increased effort to remind customers that it does not come from the nation.
Low-sulfur bunker fuel prices hit $987 per metric ton in Singapore last Tuesday, up from $580 at the end of December, according to S&P Global Platts.
Resource-rich nations and aggressive trading firms stand to reap windfalls on the war-induced surge in commodities prices.
Chicago wheat futures ended last week 8.5% lower, the worst weekly fall since 2014, but almost 75% higher than the same time last year. With Ukraine’s normally plentiful exports expected to drop sharply this year, food deprivation will spread and global food prices could rise 22%, the United Nations warns.
Trading in nickel, a key component in electric vehicle batteries and stainless steel, remained suspended on the London Metals Exchange as JPMorgan and other major banks negotiated with a major Chinese metals producer caught in a margin squeeze over hedging contracts. The price of nickel soared to over $100,000/metric ton last week, more than twice the previous record high set in 2007.
China placed 17.5 million residents of the southern city of Shenzhen into lockdown for at least a week, a move likely to cause disruption and production delays at one of the world’s largest ports and technology hubs. Apple supplier Foxconn will halt operations at its plants in the city, one of which produces iPhones.
U.S. rental prices are up about 18% on average over the past two years, Redfin says, with over a dozen states considering new rent controls that would cap price hikes to as little as 2% in some cases.
Nearly 78% of all U.S. vehicles sold last year were SUVs and trucks, up from 55% a decade ago, as buyers struggle to find fuel efficient alternatives in a world of high gas prices.
A proposed EPA rule would require power plants to reduce nitrogen-oxide emissions 29% by 2026 alongside a 15% reduction from other industrial sources. The agency is currently awaiting a Supreme Court decision over whether it has the authority to regulate those emissions under the Clean Air Act.
Russia banned the use of Instagram and Facebook for allowing critical commentary about its invasion of Ukraine and brought a criminal case against parent company Meta Platforms as an “extremist organization.”
The seven-day average COVID-19 infection rate in Germany hit a record 1,543 per 100,000 people today as the country experiences another virus surge coinciding with its winding down of pandemic protocols in mid-February.
COVID-19 cases are rising in the U.K. again, with Scotland seeing its highest infection rate of the pandemic over the weekend.