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COVID-19 - News digest as of 16.06.2020   1  

June 16/2020

1. Thai energy group PTT cuts 2020 investment

MOSCOW (MRC) -- State-owned Thai oil and gas company PTT Pcl said it would cut its investment budget across the group by 10-15% this year and some projects will be delayed as partners face challenges from the coronavirus, according to Hydrocarbonprocessing. Chief Executive Auttapol Rerkpiboon, who took up the post last month, said the PTT group faced "double effects" from the oil price slump and the coronavirus outbreak.

2. Oil demand recovery under spotlight as lockdowns ease

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Optimism over a swift and steady economic rebound from crushing pandemic lockdowns have helped global oil prices stage a dizzying rebound from near two-decade lows in April, reported S&P Global. Nearly all the oil demand metrics have been encouraging so far. After bottoming out in early to mid-April, global economic indicators are improving with the exception of aviation activity which remains well below seasonal norms.
Implied driving activity is already well above pre-crisis levels in both the US and Germany, Europe"s biggest economy and user of fuels. In the week to June 5 alone, the US saw a surge in refined product demand to 17.57 million b/d, the strongest since the week ended March 27 when the first statewide lockdowns went into effect.

3. PPG to cut costs in response to COVID-19

MOSCOW (MRC) -- PPG Industries announced a plan to cut about USD160-170 million/year in costs in an effort to reduce the companys cost structure due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. The plan includes staffing reductions, under a voluntary separation program, in the US and Canada, PPG says. These measures will enable the company to come out of the crisis with lower structural costs, says PPG chairman and CEO Michael McGarry. Despite efforts to reduce our total costs, we remain committed to continuing our investments in growth-related initiatives, including fully funding our research and development for products, services and digital capabilities that will drive long-term growth."

4. Oil set to end week lower on coronavirus resurgence fears

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Oil prices edged higher last Friday but were on track for their first weekly fall as new US coronavirus cases spiked, raising the prospect of a second wave hitting demand, reported Reuters. Brent was up 27 cents, or 0.7%, at USD38.82 a barrel by 1204 GMT, having lost more than USD1 earlier in the session. After falling more than 5% on Friday, West Texas Intermediate was up 19 cents, or 0.52% to USD36.53 a barrel. Both contracts ended around 8% lower on Thursday. The oil benchmarks are heading for weekly declines of more than 8%, their first after six weeks of gains which have lifted them off their April lows. Fears that the coronavirus pandemic may be far from over has brought the rally to a halt, with about half a dozen US states seeing a spike in new infections.

5. Crude futures remain lower in Asia trade as COVID-19 cases rise in US

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Crude oil futures were trading lower in mid-morning trade in Asia June 12 as a rise in COVID-19 cases in the US clouded the overall outlook for oil demand recovery, reported S&P Global. At 10:10 am Singapore time, ICE Brent August crude futures were down 58 cents/b (1.50%) from the June 11 settle at USD37.97/b, while the NYMEX July light sweet crude contract was 72 cents/b (1.98%) lower at SD35.62/b. "A surprise stockbuild in the US last week as well as increasing concerns over a second wave of coronavirus cases in the US have been the main catalysts for oil"s slide," OCBC analysts said in a June 12 note.
Author:Margaret Volkova
Tags:PP, PE, crude and gaz condensate, ethylene, petrochemistry, PPG, PTT Chemical, COVID-19, USA, Thailand.
Category:General News
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