COVID-19 Bulletin: January 26

January 26, 2021 • Posted in COVID-19, News

Good Afternoon,

More news relevant to the plastics industry:

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Supply

  • Oil prices were flat in mid-day trading today, with the WTI at $52.57/bbl and Brent at $55.88/bbl. Natural gas was 1.7% higher at $2.65/MMBtu.
  • U.S. gas prices are expected to rise to an average of $2.42 per gallon in 2021, according to Energy Information Administration forecasts.
  • The U.S. shale industry is showing early signs of a recovery, with the number of drilled but uncompleted wells that accumulated in June subsiding to pre-pandemic levels in recent weeks.
  • Saudi Arabia, the world’s largest oil exporter, is taking steps to gradually replace petroleum-liquid electricity generation with solar power and gas-fired capacity.
  • For the first time in history, renewable sources surpassed fossil fuels for electricity generation in the European Community last year.
  • Royal Dutch Shell is acquiring the U.K.’s leading electric vehicle charging network, adding to a growing stable of electric vehicle charging assets as the oil giant shifts investments toward sustainable technologies.
  • The world’s largest diesel engine factory in France is shifting to producing electric motors, creating uncertainty for the labor force because electric motors have one fifth the number of parts as traditional diesel engines.

Supply Chain

  • UPS announced plans to sell its freight business to rival TFI International for $800 million, a bid to exit the domestic trucking market to focus on its small-package-delivery businesses.
  • The United States Postal Service continues to experience unprecedented volume increases and staff shortages due to COVID-19, the carrier says.
  • Panasonic’s recently developed ultracold freezer boxes, capable of storing thousands of COVID-19 doses at -70°C, are in large demand around the world, as the company positions to take a significant slice of a growing vaccine storage and packaging market.
  • Logistics conditions remain strained, with trucking demand exceeding availability, continuing congestion at ports, and backlogs at warehousing and packaging facilities due in part to operating challenges related to the pandemic. Shipping containers are in short supply, with demurrage charges rising. Clients are advised to provide expanded lead times on orders to help ensure delivery dates. 

Markets

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International

Our Operations

  • Resource Center: M. Holland offers a host of resources to clients, prospects and suppliers. To arrange a videoconference or meeting, contact:

Thank you,

M. Holland Company

We will provide further COVID-19 bulletins as circumstances dictate. For all COVID-19 updates and notices, please refer to the M. Holland website.

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