OPEC+ ministers on Wednesday made no changes to the group's oil output policy, after Saudi Arabia and Russia said they would keep voluntary supply cuts in place to support the market. However, crude prices slumped over $5 per barrel soon afterward as data on U.S. gasoline inventories rose by far more than expected and fuel consumption metrics hit multi-month lows. Prices remain under pressure as this newsletter hit the press.
Elsewhere, Germany's cabinet agreed this week to put reserve coal plants back online until the end of next March in order to replace scarce natural gas and avoid potential power shortages. This may put the German government on a collision course with Europe's new climate chief, who takes charge of shaping the European Union's climate policies at a tense time.
And talks to end strikes at Chevron's two Australian liquefied natural gas (LNG) plants hit a snag on Thursday, with unions accusing the U.S. energy major of reneging on commitments and potentially gearing up to resume stoppages.