Natural Gas

Coal Production Collapses To 35-Year Low

Coal production in the first three months of 2016 was 173 million short tons, the lowest quarterly level in the United States since a major coal strike in the second quarter of 1981.

About Those Carbon Emissions

Ever since the discussions on how to address "manmade global warming" started to gain traction in the 1990s trillions of dollars have been spent on infrastructure, subsidies, R&D, regulations, trading schemes and even political organizations with the explicit intent of reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Alas, the world has changed considerably since the 1990s. Rather than diminishing, carbon emissions have actually increased by a great deal. Developing countries as a whole are now the #1 emitter. And many OECD (mostly developed) countries are trying to manage very difficult fiscal positions. In fact, the only thing that seems to have remained constant is the strategy on how to reduce emissions globally.

Goldman Prepares To Turn Bearish On Oil Again; Boosts 2016 Bond Default Target By 25%

"After a quiet Jan/Feb, E&P bankruptcies picked up steam in late 1Q ahead of spring borrowing base redeterminations. By our math, about $30bn of par value debt has defaulted in the HY E&P space YTD, representing about a 17% default rate. On the back of our bottom up analysis we are now raising our full year default forecast to 21% from 17% previously."

Scotland Bans Fracking... Forever

The Scottish Parliament voted to ban fracking countrywide on Wednesday, making a moratorium on the controversial technique a permanent affair.

Frontrunning: June 3

  • World stocks edge toward one-month high; U.S. jobs data eyed for Fed clues (Reuters)
  • Commodities Stand on Brink of Bull Market After Oil’s Recovery (BBG)
  • Brent crude oil holds above $50 on signs of rebalance (Reuters)
  • Clinton attacks Trump's foreign policy as a threat to U.S. safety (Reuters)
  • Trump strikes back at Clinton's 'phony' speech (Hill)
  • "We want food!', Venezuelans cry at protest near presidency (Reuters)

Is Obama's Entire Foreign Policy Going Down In Flames?

Is Obama’s entire foreign policy going down in flames? Or will the entire world end up burning? The NATO summit on July 8-9 this year will probably provide the best advance indication of which of those two will be the outcome from all this.

July Rate Hike Odds Rise As Beige Book Signals "Tight Job Market", "Modest Growth"

The Beige Book offered its ubiquitous modest, moderate, mummified growth outlook but added a few points that provide The Fed more ammo for hiking rates: Employment grew modestly since the last report, but tight labor markets were widely noted; wages grew modestly, and price pressure grew slightly in most Districts. The reaction was a further rise in July rate-hike odds (and easing of June and September).

$50 Oil Doesn't Work

$50 per barrel oil is clearly less impossible to live with than $30 per barrel oil, because most businesses cannot make a profit with $30 per barrel oil. But is $50 per barrel oil helpful? Gail Tverberg argues that it really is not.

This Week's Main News From The Oil Sector

For those who need a quick and easy recap of all the main events that took place in the oil and gas services sector, here it is courtesy of Credit Suisse's James Wicklung who present the various "things we've learned this week."

Beware What Washington Wishes For - Russia Is Ready For War

A case can be made that the Beltway – neocons and neoliberalcons alike - do not want a hot war with Russia. What they want, apart from racking in more cash for the Pentagon, is to raise the ante to such a high level that Moscow will back down - based on a rational cost analysis. Yet oil prices will inevitably rise later in 2016 – and under this scenario Washington is a loser. So we may see a raise of interest rates by the Fed (with all the money continuing to go to Wall Street) trying to reverse the scenario. Russia does not want – and does not need – war.. but The Aegis changes the game in the sense that it qualifies as a launch area for US missile defense.

Peak Petro-State - The Oil World In Chaos

Pity the poor petro-states. Once so wealthy from oil sales that they could finance wars, mega-projects, and domestic social peace simultaneously, some of them are now beset by internal strife or are on the brink of collapse as oil prices remain at ruinously low levels. At the peak of their glory, the petro-states played an outsized role in world affairs.  That, of course, was then, and this is now. While these countries still matter, what worries these presidents and prime ministers now is the growing likelihood of civil violence or even state collapse.