Brussels, Belgium- Oil has hit the US$120 a barrel mark, its highest level in more than two months due to tight supplies and exports of diesel from Russia.
Traders are monitoring any European Union (EU) decision on restrictions or an outright embargo on Russian oil purchases in the coming days. Bloc members are due to meet on Monday and Tuesday.
Meanwhile, G7 countries (United Kingdom, the United States, Canada, Japan, Italy, France and Germany) have decided to stop fossil fuel development funding from the end of this year.
According to analysts’ estimates, this could shift about US$33 billion a year from fossil fuels to clean energy sources.
“The G7 committing to end public finance for fossil fuels and shift it to clean (energy) is a massive win. This is a timely reconfirmation (amid the Ukraine war) that the most viable pathway to energy security is prioritizing public finance for clean energy. These promises should now urgently be turned into action,” said Laurie van der Burg, a campaign co-manager at the green group Oil Change International.
Meanwhile, in the United States, Hawaii is seeking to replace coal and oil with solar energy, aiming to rely extensively on rooftop panels.
The State has increased the use of renewable energy in large parts by getting electric utilities to accept rooftop solar rather than fight it, as energy companies in California, Florida and other states have been doing.
“In Hawaii, we have come to the recognition that rooftop solar is going to be an important part of our grid, (and) has to be part of our grid. Some people think we are crazy. Some people think we are pretty amazing,” said Shelee Kimura, president and chief executive of Hawaiian Electric Company, the State’s largest power provider.
According to the Energy Information Administration, power plants fueled by oil supplied nearly two-thirds of Hawaii’s electricity last year, down from nearly three-quarters a decade earlier.
The US economy shrank 1.6% in the first quarter, adding to recession fears – CNN
Minneapolis (CNN Business)The US economy shrank at a slightly faster rate than previously estimated during the first quarter, the Bureau of Economic Analysis said Wednesday.
The pandemic may have forever altered the economy, Fed Chair Powell says – CNN
(CNN)It’s not yet clear if the US economy will ever return to its pre-pandemic status, Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said Wednesday at a central banker forum in Portugal.
China's Economy Shows Signs of Improvement as Covid Eases – BNN
(Bloomberg) — China’s economy showed further signs of improvement in June with a strong pickup in services spending as Covid outbreaks and restrictions were gradually eased.
The official manufacturing purchasing managers index rose to 50.2 from 49.6 in May, the National Bureau of Statistics said Thursday, slightly below the median estimate of 50.5 in a Bloomberg survey of economists. It was the first time since February that the index was above 50, indicating expansion in output compared with May.
The non-manufacturing gauge, which measures activity in the construction and services sectors, climbed to 54.7, the highest in more than a year and well above the consensus forecast of 50.5.
China’s CSI 300 Index rose as much as 0.9% while major stock gauges in Asia broadly fell.
Government restrictions to contain Covid outbreaks have gradually eased over the last month. The financial hub Shanghai lifted its two-month lockdown at the start of June by allowing more shops to reopen, more factories to resume production, and for port operation to pick up.
The data suggests “the pace of recovery accelerated as the Covid situation stabilized,” said Peiqian Liu, chief China economist at NatWest Group Plc. There was a “broad based but still soft recovery in both production and new orders,” and the figures show the rebound is still milder compared with the recovery from the Wuhan lockdown in 2020, she said.
Some 19 of the 21 sectors in the service sectors tracked in the survey returned to expansion last month, up from just six in the previous month, according to the NBS. Gauges of sectors previously hit badly by the outbreaks all improved, such as railway transport, air transport, accommodation, catering and entertainment.
The recovery remains fragile though as the country sticks to its Covid Zero strategy, meaning restrictions could be tightened if outbreaks of the highly transmissible omicron variant flare up again. Chinese President Xi Jinping reaffirmed his Covid Zero policy this week, saying it was the most “economic and effective” for the country.
Economists, meanwhile, are holding firm on their gross domestic product growth forecasts for this year. The median projection in a Bloomberg survey for 2022 growth is 4.1%, well below Beijing’s annual target of around 5.5%. Bloomberg’s aggregate index of eight early indicators showed some improvement in June, though the recovery remains muted.
(Updates with additional details)
©2022 Bloomberg L.P.
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