January 7, 2021 • Posted in Daily Bulletin, News

COVID-19 Bulletin: January 7

Good Afternoon,

More news relevant to the plastics industry:

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Special notice:

In-person components of NPE2021, scheduled for May 17-21, 2021, have been canceled due to risks associated with COVID-19 transmissions, the Plastics Industry Association announced Tuesday.


  • Crude oil prices rose Wednesday on crude oil inventory draws of 8 million barrels for the last week of 2020, according to the Energy Information Administration. Oil prices were higher in mid-day trading today, with the WTI up 0.3% at $50.78/bbl and Brent up 0.3% at $54.45/bbl. Natural gas was 0.7% higher at $2.74/MMBtu.
  • Dealmaking among oil and gas producers reached its highest yearly point in the fourth quarter of 2020 as pandemic-induced fallouts prompted more consolidations.
  • The U.S. imported no oil from Saudi Arabia last week, the first time in 35 years.
  • For the first time in its history, Exxon disclosed carbon dioxide emissions generated from its operations.
  • Global banks are facing pressure to condition lending to the plastics industry on environmental support initiatives.

Supply Chain

  • Dire predictions of port chaos in the U.K. have yet to materialize following the nation’s departure from the European Union on Jan. 1.
  • Vietnam will spend up to $8.6 billion over the next decade to upgrade its ports to international standards and increase capacity.
  • Canada/U.S. transportation company Pride Group Enterprises will purchase 6,320 all-electric delivery vehicles from Workhorse Group, vehicles with up to 150 miles of range that will be used for last mile deliveries.
  • Canadian railway CN reported its 10th consecutive month of record grain and processed grain carloads.
  • A new Labor Department rule makes it easier for businesses to classify workers as independent contractors, a win for ride-sharing and third-party delivery companies.
  • Blockchain is expected to grow to a $3.5 billion component of supply chains by 2023 as businesses adopt the technology to improve efficiency and security.
  • Logistics giant XPO is adopting virtual reality technology to help train LTL service center workers.
  • 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. 


  • There were 253,145 new COVID-19 cases in the U.S. yesterday. Wednesday’s 3,865 fatalities set a new daily record, pushing total deaths above 361,000.
  • Alabama, Idaho, Iowa, Pennsylvania and South Dakota reported seven-day COVID-19 positivity rates above 40%, a sign the virus is spreading more broadly.
  • More than 50 people have been identified in the U.S. with a highly contagious mutation of COVID-19 first identified in the U.K.
  • South Dakota and West Virginia are leading the nation in administering vaccines.
The States Leading Americas Vaccination Race


  • COVID-19 infections are on the rise across the Asia Pacific region:
Coronavirus Outbreaks Intensify in the APAC Region

Our Operations

  • As we enter a new year, our President and CEO shared this message and video with our Mployees and business partners.
  • Market Expertise: M. Holland offers a host of resources to clients, prospects and suppliers across nine strategic markets. To arrange a videoconference or meeting with any of our Market Managers, please visit our website.
  • To access 3D Printing training, order parts and seek technical assistance, visit our online resource.

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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