Today’s Pickup: The oil market is taking a whipping from Saudi Arabia’s wrath

The oil market is taking a whipping from Saudi Arabia’s wrath (Photo: Shutterstock)

Good day,

The chaos is far from over for the oil markets, as prices continued to fall today after Saudi Arabia stated that Aramco, the country’s state-owned oil company, will increase its maximum sustainable production capacity from 12 million to 13 million barrels per day (b/d). This announcement comes in the wake of the country calling for an all-out oil price war over Russia’s non-cooperation at OPEC, confirming that it will push up production by roughly 2.5 million b/d from April 1. Notably, global markets are reeling under the impact of the coronavirus, which has already reduced demand for oil across the world, only helping worsen the oil market supply glut. 

Did you know?

Twenty-foot equivalent unit (TEU) moves at the Port of Los Angeles dropped 22.9% year-over-year in February, due to the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak on factory operations in Asia. The port expects volumes to continue to decline in March.


“All of our teams, our stores, our supply chain team, our procurement folks are incredibly focused on making sure that they stay in stock on those critical items.”

Rodney McMullen, the CEO of Kroger Co., commenting on the supermarket chain handling the coronavirus crisis that has skyrocketed sales of sanitizing, cold and flu products. 

In other news

Cuts to passenger flights send air freight rates soaring as manufacturing resumes in China

China’s air cargo capacity was down 39% in February compared to last year because of passenger flight cuts, according to Agility Logistics. (South China Morning Post)

Coal supplier Foresight Energy files for bankruptcy, citing coronavirus

Foresight Energy said it was already under pressure from challenging regulations and competition. (WSJ)

Container shipping blank sailings taper off on subsiding impact of coronavirus

This is a sign that carriers can expect demand to ramp back to normal levels over the next few weeks. (Seatrade Maritime News)

Samsung presents groundbreaking all-solid-state battery technology to ‘Nature Energy’

The new battery has higher energy density and is also roughly 50% smaller by volume compared to a conventional lithium-ion battery. (Samsung)

Overhaul raises $17.5 million to apply AI to supply chain management

Austin-based Overhaul is a supply chain integrity technology solution, leveraging visibility to detect and correct non-compliance within supply chains. (Venture Beat)

Final thoughts

The coronavirus outbreak has led Americans to use novel ways to get their food delivered to their homes. Instances include asking for food bags to be left at the doorstep and texting the delivery driver a picture of the spot the food needs to be left, among other quirky tactics to save themselves from infection. Companies have quickly adapted this style to their delivery methods, with companies like McDonald’s and Starbucks providing the ‘contactless promise.’ San Francisco-based delivery company Postmates has announced it will introduce no-contact delivery options to all of the 4,200 U.S. cities it operates in. 

Hammer down everyone!