BLOOMBERG - Oil has touched a level above $80 a barrel for the first time since November 2014. OPEC’s inventory target for output cuts has been met.
REUTERS - Retail sales, the key gauge for consumer demand, the primary driver of economic growth, were up 2.4 percent year-on-year in April after a 2.0 percent rise in the year to March. Capital investment, the next most important driver, was up 3.6 percent year-on-year in the first quarter after increasing 1.4 percent in the same period a year earlier.
BLOOMBERG - Natural gas will probably emerge as the main fossil fuel “winner” as it balances renewables in power generation and is used as a substitute for oil in petrochemicals. Long-term gas demand is set to increase by 15 percent, or by 750 billion cubic meters, compared to business as usual,
WNN - The United States, Canada, and Japan are launching the Nuclear Innovation: Clean Energy (NICE) Future Initiative. This global effort will make sure nuclear has a seat at the table during discussions about innovation and advanced clean energy systems of the future.
BLOOMBERG - The fund shocked markets around the world in November when it asked for permission to divest oil and gas companies to reduce financial risk, arguing Norway as a whole is already heavily exposed to oil as western Europe’s biggest petroleum producer. At the time of the proposal, the fund held about $40 billion of shares in oil giants such as Exxon Mobil Corp. and Royal Dutch Shell Plc.
REUTERS - Brent crude futures were at $79.06 per barrel at 0650 GMT, up 55 cents, or 0.7 percent, from their last close. Brent broke through $80 for the first time since November 2014 last week. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were at $71.71 a barrel, up 43 cents, or 0.6 percent, from their last settlement.
REUTERS - Saudi Arabia said on Friday it is consulting other oil producers in and outside OPEC to ensure the world has adequate supplies to support economic growth after prices hit $80 a barrel for the first time since 2014.
NYT - China and India are the biggest buyers of Iranian crude, but they also provide markets for 40 percent of Venezuelan exports, which have been plummeting under the weight of mismanagement, debt and American financial sanctions.
API - American Petroleum Institute reported that the first four months of this year saw U.S. petroleum demand average 750 thousand barrels a day above the same period in 2017 despite higher prices, a sign of solid economic activity. April also saw the U.S. produce a record 10.5 million barrels per day (MBD) of oil.
IMF - “Egypt’s growth has continued to accelerate during 2017/18, rising to 5.2 percent in the first half of the year from 4.2 percent in 2016/17. The current account deficit has also declined sharply, reflecting the recovery in tourism and strong growth in remittances, while improved investor confidence has continued to support portfolio inflows. In addition, gross international reserves rose to $44 billion by end-April, equal to 7 months of imports.