Oil dips on demand worries as COVID-19 lockdowns tighten

FILE PHOTO: The sun sets behind an oil pump outside Saint-Fiacre, near Paris, France September 17, 2019. REUTERS/Christian Hartmann/File Photo

MELBOURNE/SINGAPORE (Reuters) -Oil prices edged down on Tuesday as tighter lockdowns in Europe and an OPEC forecast for a slower recovery in demand next year outweighed relief from the roll-out of coronavirus vaccines.

U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures fell 18 cents, or 0.38%, to $46.81 a barrel by 0737 GMT. Brent crude futures fell 20 cents, or 0.4%, to $50.09 a barrel.

London stepped up restrictions requiring bars and restaurants to close, as COVID-19 infection rates continued to rise sharply, which will dent fuel demand in the near term.

Further marring the demand outlook, Italy said it was considering more stringent restrictions over the Christmas holidays, while most stores in Germany have been ordered to shut until Jan. 10.

“While the market has

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COVID-19 restricts keel ceremony for submarine USS Massachusetts

Dec. 14 (UPI) — A keel authentication was held virtually this weekend for the under-construction fast-attack submarine USS Massachusetts in Newport News, Va., Huntington Ingalls Industries announced.

The ceremonial welding of a sponsor’s initials onto the new vessel’s keel had a reduced audience because of the COVID-19 pandemic, HII said in a press release.

Jennifer Boykin, president of Huntington Ingalls Industries’ Newport News Shipbuilding division, noted at the ceremony that the event on Friday was “smaller in scope but not in importance.”

Facebook CEO Sheryl Sandberg, the sponsor of the vessel, currently known as SSN 798, etched her initials onto a metal plate to be welded to the keel in a pre-recorded video message.

HHI master shipbuilder Ronnie Payne then traced Sandberg’s initials with a welding torch on Friday.

“This year has been difficult for so many, and I am extra grateful for moments like this one when we can

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European stocks and U.S. equity futures climb on COVID-19 vaccine optimism and stimulus-deal hopes

a group of people standing in front of a building

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European stocks traded higher on Monday, alongside U.S. equity futures, with investors encouraged by COVID-19 vaccine progress and hopes for a stimulus deal out of Washington. No collapse in Brexit talks also lifted sentiment.

The Stoxx Europe 600 index rose 0.9%, after the index logged a 1% loss last week, snapping a five-week winning streak. The German DAX and the French CAC 40 were up over 1% each.

Gains were less pronounced for the FTSE 100 index which rose 0.5% as the pound surged against the dollar, last up 1.5% to $1.3431. U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, agreed on Sunday to go “the extra mile” to reach a post-Brexit trade deal.

The two said that discussions would continue as the legal deadline of Dec. 31 looms. And while Johnson pointed out that both sides

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China’s dry ice equipment sector in full swing to meet US COVID-19 vaccine transport needs

Global Times

By Yin Yeping Source: Global Times Published: 2020/12/13 19:43:40

China’s dry ice equipment suppliers in full swing

As US President Donald Trump hailed the launch of COVID-19 vaccines, dry ice and its machine suppliers in China are working in full swing to respond to soaring demand for the cold chain, in which ice dry plays an indispensable part, with some companies’ export orders to the US jumping by an unprecedented 10 to 20 times year-on-year.

Industry insiders predicted that the shortage of dry ice will be further worsened with the launch of more vaccines, and it may not be eased within half a year.

Pfizer’s vaccine should be stored at -70 C, pushing up demand for dry ice, which has widely been used in the delivery of deep sea fish, beef and imported fruit – products that often have high requirements for transport temperatures.

Meanwhile, logistic disruptions due

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REGASCO LPG: Helping food entrepreneurs operate through COVID-19

REGASCO LPG: Helping food entrepreneurs operate through COVID-19

( – December 14, 2020 – 9:42am

MANILA, Philippines — COVID-19 has affected every kind of business, with the food and food delivery sectors taking a significant hit. 

Using its experience from the market landscape through the quarantine period, Republic Gas Corporation (REGASCO LPG) has fully adapted and implemented their services to help micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) in the food and food delivery industries to continue their services during the pandemic.

According to REGASCO Marketing Head Lesley Yiu, the pandemic’s effects on their own business was instantly apparent: “Consumers were hesitant to order face-to-face.” 

This presented a challenge for the millions of Filipinos that still rely on LPG for their household needs, as well as the thousands of food businesses that use it every day.

The increased popularity of online food delivery services presented another major shift in the

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The Fate of Home Exercise Equipment When Covid-19 Ends

Five questions with

Jillian Michaels,

fitness expert, author and television personality.

Q:How would you say home exercise and fitness changed in 2020?

A: We saw people getting outdoors a lot more because it was the only place to go. It opened a lot of people to their environment more than they had ever experienced it, and they took up jogging, hiking, biking, surfing, skateboarding—all of those things.

And then I saw a lot of people exploring different at-home fitness options, which run the gamut from things like Peloton [bikes, treadmills] to at-home streaming apps. It has given people more options and more variety for the future so that they know no matter what happens there are a million options and alternatives available to make fitness accessible and affordable.

Q:Doesn’t history suggest that those Peloton bikes, surfboards, skateboards are going to be in the back of a closet by

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COVID-19 Vaccine Advancement Drives Emerging Market Optimism In November

The year looks like it’s ending on an optimistic note as emerging markets are holding strong overall, according to our Emerging Markets Equity team. The team outlines reasons 2021 could bring brighter days and offers highlights of news and events driving emerging markets during the month of November.

Three Things We’re Thinking About Today

  1. We are of the opinion that there are a number of high-level reasons to be positive on emerging markets (EMs) based on a combination of a Joe Biden presidency and a Republican Senate in the United States. First, we believe this election result is likely to cap US interest rates for longer and therefore weaken the US dollar, thereby inducing a flow of money into EMs, further benefiting those countries. Second, we could expect a softer policy stance toward China. Under Biden, we could see some resolution to the China-US relationship and a form of peace
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Equipment deliveries help Columbus kids during COVID-19 pandemic

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues on, it can be hard enough to handle the daily challenges of life. It’s even more difficult in many cases to find the time and money for leisure, and the sport of hockey falls under that umbrella. 

That’s where the NHL, NHLPA and Pure Hockey have stepped in. The three entities have combined recently to launch a National Equipment Relief Program to provide new equipment at no cost to hockey families that have been impacted by COVID-19 in each NHL market, all in an effort to encourage kids to continue to play this great sport. 

Dylan Daniels is one of those kids. The 11-year-old who plays wing for the Columbus Chill Youth Hockey Association was surprised Thursday as Blue Jackets defenseman Zach Werenski, broadcaster Bob McElligott and mascot Stinger combined to deliver new gloves, pants, skates and a new helmet to young Dylan as

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Covid-19 Is Changing How Apps And Entrepreneurs Play Cupid This Christmas

Trying to find that special someone for the so-called most wonderful time of the year is difficult enough. Add a worsening pandemic, and it might seem downright impossible.

Locked-down lonelyhearts are less likely to put their money into technology aimed at finding new romance, as many bars, restaurants and coffee shops— the most popular places to meet a date — have either closed shop or had to reduce their service to takeout only. That’s led to big changes in the online dating industry, and inspired new competition, from mom and pop startups to 21st century matchmakers.

Apps Ride The Waves

It turns out singles looking for love aren’t the only ones getting their hearts broken this Christmas.

For the companies behind the most popular dating apps, 2020

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Shift4 Payments: As Merchants Persevere Throughout the Fall, Transaction Volumes Show Continuing Impact of COVID-19

Despite an October in which transaction volumes exceeded seasonal expectations, November transaction volumes reveal the impact of the ongoing pandemic

Shift4 Payments (NYSE: FOUR), the leader in integrated payment processing solutions, has revealed that the month-over-month change in U.S. merchant transaction volumes from October to November dipped more than in previous years as merchants and consumers contend with recent spikes in COVID-19 transmission and renewed health and safety restrictions. Nonetheless, Shift4’s data indicate that transaction counts in October reached totals that exceeded the expected seasonal decline.

The anticipated seasonal decline heading into the fall is often most discernable in the month-over-month change from October into November, where historical data indicates merchants may expect an average 5% drop in monthly transaction volume. However, this year’s data—posted daily on—reveals a decline of 10% from October to November, suggesting that the typical seasonality of merchant

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