COVID-19 Bulletin: June 25

June 25, 2020 • Posted in News

Good Afternoon,

More COVID-19 news relevant to the plastics industry:

Supply

  • After declining yesterday, oil prices climbed in mid-day trading with the WTI crude price up 2.2% to $38.84/bbl and Brent 2.0% higher at $41.14/bbl. 
  • Natural gas prices approached a 25-year low in early trading today, down 2% to $1.612 MMBtu.
  • Oil companies in Texas stalled plans to return workers to offices in the face of record infection rates in the state.

Supply Chain

M. Holland COVID-19 June 25 Bulletin Port Status Chart

Markets

  • The U.S. set a record for COVID-19 infections yesterday with 36,888 new cases, surpassing the previous peak of 36,739 set on April 24. States and localities struggled in response: 
    • Thirty-three states are seeing a rise in their five-day average infection rates.
    • California, Florida and Texas reported record new infections yesterday, with Florida registering the third highest single-day infection rate of any state since the pandemic began.
    • Connecticut, New Jersey and New York, once the epicenter of the virus, are imposing quarantines on people arriving from eight states with runaway infection rates: Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, Florida, North Carolina, South Carolina, Utah and Texas. 
    • In Texas, where hospitalizations have doubled this month, the rate of positive tests exceeded 10%, a “red flag” according to experts.
    • Intensive care units in Houston are at 97% of capacity.
    • Testing labs in Arizona have been overwhelmed, with people in Phoenix enduring hours-long waits and three-mile lines for drive-through testing.
    • Washington State mandated face masks as at least one county has run out of hospital beds.
  • Anecdotal evidence suggests consumer traffic is slowing in states with rising infection rates, suggesting the economic recovery will encounter fits and starts.
How COVID-19 Has Impacted US Spending Levels
  • A higher-than-expected 1.48 million people filed first-time jobless claims last week, with the total receiving benefits at 19.5 million.
  • Disparate rules on reopening are disrupting border economies between states, shifting business activity and tax income toward those with lax restrictions.
  • Online business directory Yelp reported that the majority of its listed businesses idled during the pandemic remained closed as of June 15. Twenty percent of the 140,000 that remained closed are permanently shuttered.
  • The White House proposed expanding and increasing tariffs on $7.5 billion in imports from the European Union and the U.K. in an escalating trade dispute.
  • GM will eliminate third shift and lay off 680 workers at its Spring Hill, Tennessee, plant to adjust to lower demand caused by the pandemic.
  • Stakes are high as Ford introduces its overhauled F-150 truck this week, which accounted for $42 billion in revenue, ranking it among the most valuable consumer products last year.
  • Tesla plans to build a battery research and manufacturing facility in California.
  • Disney will delay reopening theme parks in California; Disney employees in Florida petitioned to delay the reopening there.
  • shortage of used PET and low prime resin prices have frustrated beverage companies from meeting ambitious recycling goals during the pandemic.
  • Green energy stocks have outperformed the S&P as the cost of alternative energy sources falls; green energy is expected to attract half of all energy investment this year.
  • Global COVID-19 infections approached 9.5 million today. 

International

  • Germany gained control of its recent hot spots, reporting the lowest new infection rate in three weeks.
  • COVID-19 fatalities in Latin America are projected to hit 390,000 by October with Brazil and Mexico expected to account for two-thirds of the casualties.
  • The Latin American economy will shrink by 9.4% this year, according to the IMF, worse than its April forecast of a 5.2% contraction.
  • Displaced European workers face an “economic cliff” as government emergency support is set to expire. 
  • Infections in Indonesia, the fourth most populous nation, spiked past 50,000 after the country eased social distancing mandates.
  • In a nursing home in Spain, plastics help deliver love and protection.

Our Operations

  • For clients seeking the convenience of accessing order status, order history, invoices, bills of lading and other information online, contact Tara Cutaia, Director of Client Experience, to sign up for our proprietary MHX app.
  • To access 3D printing training, order parts and seek technical assistance, visit our new online resource.
  • Resource Center: M. Holland offers a host of resources to clients, prospects and suppliers. To arrange a videoconference or meeting, contact:
    • For Technical questions, contact Paul Lorigan, Manager of the M. Holland Technical Innovation Center.
  • M. Holland’s official status statement is available here.

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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