From the May 2016 lows, the number of US oil rig counts have only declined 3 times and this week was no exception. Up for its 15th week in a row (+9 to 697), its highest level since April 2015, the rig count continues to pull US crude production higher, stymying OPEC efforts at balance, leaving the bullish case for oil fading fast.
Late last week, lawyers representing the Cherokee Nation filed a lawsuit against major pharmaceutical companies, claiming they have pumped dangerous painkillers into Native American communities in Oklahoma. The Washington Post obtained a copy of the court filing and reported that the companies are accused of breaking laws by “failing to prevent the diversion of pain pills to the black market.”
"...yes, we’re an incredibly violent and cruel species that is capable of mind-boggling horrors when we’re trying to survive. Hell, some of the things we do when we aren’t desperate are still nightmare inducing. But what most people forget is that in our darkest moments, we’re capable of immeasurable acts of compassion and altruism."
Trump could call up providers and bully them into offering coverage. But does that make any sense from a party that wants to Kill Obamacare? The system is set up to implode and there is no point to doing anything until it does. After an implosion, there will be bipartisan support to do something. Right now there is no bipartisan support to do anything.
Even as so-called 'sanctuary cities' around the country ramp up their efforts to thwart the Trump administration on enforcing immigration laws, despite the risk of losing their federal subsidies, arrests of illegal immigrants spiked 33% YoY in the first 52 days of Trump's presidency.
WTI/RBOB prices slipped ahead of DOE data as Canada's growth outlook cut trumped Saudi Arabia's wishy-washy chatter on production cuts. DOE data confirmed the biggest crude draw of 2017 (-2.16mm) and gasopline and distilates saw the 8th week in a row of drawdowns but Cushing's 276k build pushed it to a new record high as US crude production rose once again to its highest sine August 2015.
Following last night's API-reported unexpected draw in crude, the energy complex was on a tear heading into the DOE data... but that ended quickly with a surprise build in crude and smaller than expeccted draws in gasoline and distillates. WTI/RBOB are notably lower on the data. Another rise in production further stressed markets.
Uncertainty is dominating today’s oil markets, with production cuts, ballooning inventories and a rising rig count all adding to oil price volatility. And as the summer driving season approaches and oil companies return to their projects here are four key factors to watch closely.
The key economic releases this week are the consumer confidence report on Tuesday, the third estimate of Q4 GDP on Thursday, and the PCE report as well as Personal Income & Spending data on Friday. In addition, there are several scheduled speaking engagements by Fed officials this week.