NEW YORK (AP) — As drivers, shippers and airlines continue to enjoy lower fuel prices, the oil industry is responding to much lower profits with sharp cuts in spending and employment that are hurting economic growth.
Low oil and gas prices are good for the overall economy because they reduce costs for consumers and business. U.S. economic growth was higher in the second quarter, and economists say that was partly fueled by consumers spending some of their savings on gasoline at stores and restaurants.
Remarks from the Secretary General indicating that OPEC would maintain its production levels to retain its market share pushed oil prices lower early Friday, Reuters reports. U.S. benchmark crude fell 90 cents to $47.62 a barrel in electronic trading on the Nymex, while in London Brent lost 70 cents to $52.61.
Support for oil prices, provided by a report of a drawdown in inventories, evaporated Thursday in the face of a rally in the dollar. U.S. benchmark crude lost 27 cents to settle at $48.52 on the Nymex, while in London, Brent slipped 7 cents to $53.31, Reuters reports.
An unexpected Energy Information Administration report of a stockpile drop has halted oil’s July price slide in its tracks. West Texas Intermediate crude rose 8 cents to $48.87 a barrel early Thursday in electronic trading on the Nymex, while in London Brent gained 39 cents to $53.77, Dow Jones reports.
The reported decline in U.S. crude inventories helped oil prices reverse a recent slide Wednesday. Light, sweet crude for September delivery gained 81 cents, or 1.7 percent, to settle at $48.79 a barrel on the Nymex, while in London, Brent inched up 8 cents to $53.38, The Wall Street Journal reports.
Data indicating OPEC produced about 3 million barrels per day more than demand in the second quarter helped to drag oil prices lower early Wednesday, Reuters reports. U.S. benchmark crude dropped 20 cents on the Nymex to $47.78 a barrel, while in London Brent fell 22 cents to $53.08.
More losses from China's stock market continued to pressure oil prices early Tuesday. U.S. benchmark crude dropped 36 cents to $47.03 a barrel in electronic trading on the Nymex, while in London Brent lost 78 cents to $52.69, Reuters reports.
Plunging Chinese stocks took oil prices with them Monday, as crude continues to plumb depths not seen since March. Light, sweet crude for September delivery lost 75 cents to settle at $47.39 a barrel on the Nymex, while in London, Brent slumped $1.15, or 2.1 percent, to $53.47, The Wall Street Journal reports.
More indications of a supply glut combined with a steep drop in China’s stock market sent oil sliding again early Monday. U.S. benchmark crude lost 57 cents to $47.57 a barrel in electronic trading on the Nymex, while in London Brent fell 99 cents to $53.63, Reuters reports.
The Obama administration may be backing away from its insistence that future coal-burning power plants use carbon capture technology, settling instead on a requirement for ultra-supercritical technology in the Environmental Protection Agency's Clean Power Plan, E&E reports.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers argued that the Environmental Protection Agency's Clean Water Rule lacks a sound scientific basis in memos made public by the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Thursday, The Hill reports.
The Department of Energy has agreed to rework its proposed efficiency standards for walk-in freezers and coolers, according to the Air-Conditioning, Heating and Refrigeration Institute, which says it has reached a settlement with the DOE over the issue, The Hill reports.
Sen. Martin Heinrich, D-N.M. says some other Democrats may be willing to go along with him and Sen. Angus King, I-Me., in a willingness to support legislation lifting the ban on U.S. crude exports if it also backs renewable energy such as wind and solar, E&E reports.
Despite data from the Energy Information Administration showing that U.S. crude production peaked at almost 9.7 million barrels a day in March, news of an increase in oil rig count this week piled more pressure on prices. U.S. benchmark crude slumped $1.40, or 2.9 percent, to settle at $47.12 a barrel on the Nymex, while in London, Brent dropped $1.10 to $52.26, its lowest settlement since January, The Wall Street Journal reports.
Chevron is getting nearly a third more oil and gas from its wells in the Permian Basin, and is paying less for oilfield services as well—but even so, its second quarter profits dove 90 percent on lower crude prices, FuelFix reports.
Hess has increased its production forecast for its Bakken Shale operations to up to 110,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day, despite the company dropping the number of rigs it’s operating in the play, Platts reports.
Many witnesses testifying at the first Interior Department hearing on the future of the federal coal program—which was attended by Secretary Sally Jewell—said they wanted to see higher royalty rates to raise more money for U.S. taxpayers, High Country News reports.
Senior creditors for Alpha Natural Resources Inc. will loan money to the beleaguered Virginia-based coal company to help it get through bankruptcy, a filing for which could come as early as Monday, Bloomberg reports.
Although Thursday’s peak demand of 67,624 megawatts didn’t break the all-time record as the Electric Reliability Council of Texas had feared, it's been a huge week for demand, and the grid operator expects high usage throughout the summer, FuelFix reports.