More COVID-19 news relevant to the plastics industry:
Oil prices were higher in late trading today with the WTI crude price up 3.4% to $39.80/bbl and Brent up 2.0% to $41.85/bbl.
Fracking pioneer Chesapeake Energy filed for bankruptcy, the largest failure so far in the shale industry where up to 200 producers are vulnerable if oil and gas prices remain depressed.
The COVID-19 infection surge in Texas has prompted many companies, including LyondellBasell and Shell, to return to work-at-home protocols and demonstrates the challenge of reopening offices during the pandemic.
The U.S. Postal Service will raise rates for international parcel shipments on July 1.
Consumer product companies from automakers to restaurants have pared product and menu offerings due to demand and supply-chain challenges during the pandemic, changes that could become permanent.
American Airlines followed United in announcing it will return to full flights, leaving Delta, Jet Blue and Southwest as major airlines not filling middle seats. American also signaled further staffing cuts may be required.
California passed legislation to mandate a move to all electric or hydrogen powered trucks and vans starting in 2024.
Start-up electric truck developer Nikola Corp. is selling $5,000 reservations to buy its Badger battery-powered truck even before it has a prototype or manufacturing partner for the vehicle.
Tesla has seen strong preorders for its electric truck:
Start-up Relativity Space is using giant 3D printers to manufacture entire rockets, reducing the bill of materials from over 100,000 parts to about 1,000, bringing the manufacturing cycle down to 60 days, and employing nearly “lights-out” manufacturing during the pandemic.
The U.S. is not among the 15 countries with which the European Union plans to end border travel restrictions.
Mexico’s violent crime epidemic was spotlighted in the country’s capital city on Friday in a failed assassination attempt of the police chief by a drug cartel. He was wounded and three others killed.
The COVID-19 recession is severely impacting Africa’s expanding middle class, which comprises about 14% of the continent’s 1.3 billion population, and could throw 8 million into poverty.
World trade will fall 13.4% this year, erasing years of progress, as the pandemic exerts profound pressures on globalization, from the flow of trade to the movement of capital to infrastructure investment.
Amazon’s Indian unit has eliminated the use of all single-use packaging in its fulfillment centers, replacing bubble wrap with paper cushioning and tapes with biodegradable alternatives.
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