Actions before marketing: oil prices are finally falling. Say thanks to china and joe biden

What’s happening: West Texas Intermediate futures, the US benchmark for oil prices, and Brent futures, the global benchmark, are now trading at their lowest levels in six weeks on signals that supply constraints could start to ease soon.

In the United States, prices fell sharply on Wednesday after oil inventories at a key hub in Cushing, Oklahoma, rose for the first time in weeks.

But Bjornar Tonhaugen, head of oil markets at consultancy Rystad Energy, told me that the main factor driving prices right now is the expected release of strategic reserves from the United States and China.

According to the White House, US President Joe Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping discussed “the importance of taking action to meet global energy supplies” at their virtual summit this week. This sparked discussions of a coordinated initiative initiated by the White House to bring millions of barrels of oil to market.

Thursday brought signs that China is taking action. Reuters reported that the country’s state reserve office said it was working on a release, though the exact details remain unclear.

A spokesperson for China’s National Food and Strategic Reserves Administration told CNN on Friday it “is currently continuing work related to the crude oil spills,” but declined to say if this was in response. to an American request to work together to tackle the supply crisis.

Based on current price movements, Tonhaugen said, investors expect between 20 million and 30 million barrels to come online within the next month. It could come from the United States and China together, or through broader action coordinated by the International Energy Agency.

He stressed, however, that the release of strategic reserves will not change the overall situation for long.

“[Releasing] strategic reserves is not the same as getting more continuous oil production online, ”Tonhaugen said.

But more lasting relief could come. The IEA said in a report this week that it expects global oil supplies to increase by 1.5 million barrels per day in November and December as part of production in the United States resumes.

“The global oil market remains tight in all respects, but a reprieve from rising prices could be on the horizon,” the Paris-based agency said.

OPEC is also steadily increasing production, but questions are raised as to whether the gains in supply will be sufficient to meet increased demand for fuel.

Watch this space: President Joe Biden, taking the political heat of soaring gasoline prices, asked the Federal Trade Commission Wednesday to investigate “immediately” whether the illegal activities of oil and gas companies are contributing to the problem.
American Petroleum Institute slammed the push and renewed its call on the federal government to encourage domestic production of oil and gas even as it tries to tackle the climate crisis.

“It is a distraction from the fundamental change underway and the ill-advised government decisions that are making this predicament worse,” the group said in a statement.

Paytm, backed by Warren Buffett, stumbles during his trading debut

One of the most prominent companies to start trading in the Indian stock market is a difficult start.

It just happened: Paytm shares were launched in Mumbai on Thursday. The startup’s shares went online at $ 26 apiece, below the offer price. They finished down more than 27%, giving the company a market value of less than $ 14 billion.

The weak start reflects analyst fears about the digital payments company, reports my CNN Business colleague Diksha Madhok. Despite its buzz, it lost hundreds of millions of dollars last year and looks far from ready to make a profit. It also faces competition from some of the biggest tech companies in the world.

Its IPO still marks a milestone. The digital payments company raised $ 2.5 billion during its IPO – the largest on record in the country when measured in local currency.

With the backing of investors such as Warren Buffett, Masayoshi Son and Alibaba, Paytm is one of the best-funded startups in India.

The business took off five years ago when Prime Minister Narendra Modi banned two of the country’s largest banknotes. The move was hugely disruptive to the Indian economy, but it helped Paytm grow at an explosive rate: the company signed 10 million new users in one month.

Paytm now has 337 million registered consumers and 22 million merchants. However, the ground is congested. Facebook and Google also want a share of the huge market and have launched their own mobile payment systems in the country.

The metaverse is bigger than Facebook

Facebook (FB) (um, meta platforms) is not the only company intend to profit from the metaverse.
The most recent: Actions of Nvidia (NVDA), the industry leader in graphics processors and AI chips, rose 9% in pre-market trading on Thursday after the company reported record revenues and forecast better-than-expected earnings for its next quarter.

Nvidia recently announced the official launch of NVIDIA Omniverse, a virtual world design and simulation platform. The company said it hopes to tap the 40 million 3D designers in the global market.

“This is just the tip of the iceberg of what’s to come,” said CEO Jensen Huang.

Chipmaker Qualcomm (QCOM) also wants to participate in the action, telling investors he intends to be “the ticket to the metaverse”. Companies ranging from Playboy owner to Warner Music Group label and media giant Disney have all discussed the metaverse in profit calls in recent weeks, my CNN Business colleague Paul R. La Monica noted.

Then there is the Roblox gaming platform, which allows users to generate their own avatars and play games created by other players. The shares have climbed nearly 160% since their listing on the New York Stock Exchange earlier this year.

Epic Games CEO Tim Sweeney told CNN in Seoul that the metaverse will not be created by a single company. “It will be created by millions of developers, each building their share,” Sweeney said.

Setback: Facebook caused a stir by changing its corporate name to Meta Platforms, as it focuses on augmented reality and virtual worlds. But if her vision for the future comes true, she won’t be the only one to reap the benefits.

Following

Ali Baba (BABA), JD.com (JD), Kohl’s (KSS), Macy’s (M) and Petco publish their results before the US markets open. Ross Stores (ROST) and Williams-sonoma (WSM) follow after the close.

Also today: First jobless claims in the United States for last week at 8:30 a.m. ET.

Coming tomorrow: Walk-in locker (Florida) earnings end big week in retail.


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Felix J. Dixon