- The number of confirmed cases of the new coronavirus epidemic is expected to surge during the holiday.
- Crude oil futures turned down after experiencing an increase.
- Natural gas futures in January plummeted.
US President Donald Trump decided to change his policy over the weekend and signed a bill that includes the $ 900 billion in aid to consumers and small businesses. However, crude oil futures increased production due to the spread of the epidemic and OPEC+ expectations intensified. Crude oil gave up early gains and closed slightly lower.
West Texas Intermediate crude oil for February delivery on the New York Mercantile Exchange fell 39 cents, to $47.85 per barrel, or 0.8%, and once rose to $48.96 during the session.
The February global benchmark Brent crude oil traded on the ICE European Futures Exchange fell 23 cents to $51.06 per barrel, or 0.4%.
President Trump tweeted several times, saying, “increase payments to the people, get rid of the ‘pork.’” He also tweeted, “$2000 + $2000 plus other family members. Not $600. Remember, it was China’s fault!”
Mizuho Securities Energy Director Robert Yeager said in a report that the number of confirmed cases of the new coronavirus epidemic is expected to surge during the holiday.
In addition, OPEC+ will approve the expected order to continue increasing crude oil by 500,000 barrels a day at the monthly meeting on January 4. Crude oil futures turned down after experiencing an increase.
There are more than 19 million cases of coronavirus in the United States, and health experts warn that after millions of Americans spend the Christmas holiday, the next few weeks will be very difficult.
President Trump said, “much more money is coming, and I will never give up my fight for the American people!” Last week, President Trump criticized the $900 billion stimulus plan and demanded that the $600 checks to American families be increased to $2,000, which caught investors and lawmakers off guard.
On Sunday evening, he changed course and signed the bill. The plan includes providing $1.4 trillion in funding for government agencies by September to avoid a government shutdown.
“The President’s pointless delay in approving the relief legislation cost millions of Americans a week’s worth of pandemic-related unemployment assistance that they desperately need,” said Rep. Richard Neal (D-MA), Chair of the House Ways and Means Committee.
“His stalling only intensified anxiety and hardship for workers and families who are collateral damage in his political games. Now, people will need to wait even longer for direct payments and other vital assistance to arrive.”
“I understand he wants to be remembered for advocating for big checks, but the danger is he’ll be remembered for chaos and misery and erratic behavior if he allows this to expire,” Sen. Pat Toomey (R-PA) said on Fox News Sunday. “So I think the best thing to do, as I [said], sign this and then make the case for subsequent legislation.”
Among other energy products, natural gas futures in January plummeted nearly 9% to $2.297 per million British Thermal Units, resulting in a drop of more than 20% that month.
Analysts said natural gas inventories fell less than expected last week. January gasoline futures fell 0.5% to $1.3721 per gallon, and January heating oil futures fell 0.7% to $1.4801 per gallon.