Oil prices rose above $81/bbl Friday following OPEC’s decision to stick to gradual monthly production increases. Futures were higher in late morning trading as traders await the likely release of crude from the U.S. Strategic Petroleum Reserve. WTI was up 0.9% at $82.03/bbl and Brent up 1.1% at $83.61/bbl. U.S. natural gas was 0.7% higher at $5.56/MMBtu.
Saudi Aramco hiked December prices for customers in Asia, the U.S. and Europe on Friday, a day after OPEC+ stuck to its plan to boost output at a gradual pace. Traders see the move as a sign OPEC will continue resisting calls from the U.S. to pump more oil.
Higher U.S. natural gas exports are pushing domestic prices up, with utilities from the Pacific Northwest to New England filing requests to raise rates this winter.
German gas orders via a key Russian pipeline signaled only a marginal increase in shipments today, throwing doubt into the Russian president’s recent pledge to export more gas to Europe amid a supply crunch.
U.S. clean energy startup Helion Energy raised $500 million for a small-scale nuclear fusion project which, if successful, could begin producing more power than it uses.
Oil shipping and storage operator Euronav reported a third-quarter net loss of $105.9 million compared to a near $50 million profit a year ago, as constrained OPEC production and COVID-19 lockdowns depressed demand.
The average price for transporting a 40-foot container from Shanghai to Los Angeles last week dropped to $9,857, more than 10% below a record high six weeks ago.
Global air freight demand was up by more than 9% from pre-pandemic levels in September, new data shows, despite capacity constraints of roughly the same amount.
Maersk will require all office workers to be vaccinated against COVID-19, the world’s largest shipping line announced.
Schneider National relied on ocean-carrier capacity secured by its Asia-based operations to deliver more than 1,600 intermodal containers in the third quarter, with plans to get another 1,600 in the fourth quarter.
Los Angeles expanded its COVID-19 proof-of-vaccine requirement for entry into almost all indoor businesses, including malls, gyms, coffee shops, and other venues. The mandate was already in effect for restaurants, bars, and nightclubs.
The U.S. has canceled its contract with COVID-19 vaccine manufacturer Emergent several months after an inspection at its Maryland plant uncovered multiple problems that led to millions of botched Johnson & Johnson and AstraZeneca vaccine doses.
Alaska now has the highest COVID-19 case rate in the U.S., averaging 570.9 cases per 100,000 people in the past week, more than four times the national average.
The U.S. is bracing for a surge in international travelers as restrictions are lifted today, with United Airlines preparing for a 50% increase in inbound vaccinated travelers and Delta reporting a 450% increase in international bookings over the past six weeks. Airlines are on a hiring spree for pilots and are expected to onboard the highest number in more than three decades.
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