About The Author

Phil Flynn

Phil Flynn is writer of The Energy Report, a daily market commentary discussing oil, the Middle East, American government, economics, and their effects on the world's energies markets, as well as other commodity markets. Contact Mr. Flynn at (888) 264-5665

Oil is surging to another yearly high as demand expectations rise, supply falls, geopolitical risks rise and OPEC March Oil output falls by 50,000 bpd from February to 26.42 million bpd according to the latest survey. Export cuts by Mexico to the tune of 600,000 barrels a day come on a day when manufacturing data and prices paid data in the US came in much stronger than expected. Then heightened geopolitical risks rose higher after a missile attack hit an Iranian diplomatic building in Damascus that killed a senior Iranian general. Iran said it was an Israeli attack that would demand an Iranian response. Iran is blaming Israel and the United States.

Iran’s Ali Khamenei is vowing to punish Israel after the deadly attacks while Iran reportedly is in backdoor conversations with the United States to try to ease tensions that could boil over into a confrontation that both Iran and the United States are trying to avoid. Iranian state media said the attack on Monday killed a senior leader in the elite Quds Force of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, which oversees Tehran’s network of militia allies throughout the region. The commander, Gen. Mohammad Reza Zahedi, managed Iranian paramilitary operations in Syria and Lebanon, according to Iranian state media and U.S. officials.

This came after a report that the Chinese manufacturing sector expanded stronger than anticipated. We also got a report from the ISM manufacturing here in the United States that showed that the US manufacturing sector is rebounding.

Bloomberg News reported that US factory activity unexpectedly expanded in March for the first time since September 2022 on a sharp rebound in production and stronger demand, while input costs climbed. The Institute for Supply Management’s manufacturing gauge rose 2.5 points to 50.3 last month, according to data released Monday. While barely above the level of 50 that separates expansion and contraction, it halted 16 straight months of shrinking activity. That report added to demand expectations for oil and products. And with the global well supply deficit already developing, the increased risk to supplies will keep the market on edge. Oil products like gasoline and diesel are starting to bounce back after being skeptical about the move but the inventories for products around the globe are below average and that should keep the market well supported on breaks. Bloomberg reported, “Mexico’s Pemex will ship less oil in a push to feed domestic refineries reducing Mexico’s exports by about 600,000 barrels a day of Maya crude oil.

There are more questions as to whether the US oil and gas industry can continue to overcome the hostile regulatory environment of the Biden administration. The American Petroleum Institute (API) is warning that the US will lose its energy advantage as the Biden administration continues to push short-sighted regulations on electric vehicles and new methane taxes that will severely curtail US oil and gas production and give our advisories a huge economic and military advantage.

In a release, the API and the Energy Workforce & Technology Council joined with 18 other associations representing all segments of the U.S. oil and gas industry operating across the country in calling on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to revise its “misguided” methane fee on American energy. In comments submitted to the agency on the “waste emissions charge” proposed rulemaking, the associations argued that EPA’s proposed rule creates an incoherent regulatory regime, fails to meet the statutory requirements outlined by the Inflation Reduction Act, and disincentivizes emissions reduction efforts by the industry. “This tax on American energy is a serious misstep that could jeopardize our nation’s energy advantage and weaken our energy security,” said API Senior Vice President of Policy, Economics and Regulatory Affairs Dustin Meyer. “U.S. oil and natural gas is innovating throughout its operations to reduce methane emissions while meeting growing energy demand. Yet, this proposal creates an incoherent, confusing regulatory regime that will only stifle technology advancements and hamper energy development. With partners across the industry, we will consider all options to ensure a smart regulatory framework for continued American energy development.”

One way to reduce greenhouse gas emissions of course is going nuclear just don’t tell Jane Fonda. But the reality is that nuclear may play an even bigger part in the world’s quest to reduce greenhouse gas emissions than many may have imagined. Bloomberg News is reporting that, “US oil companies including Diamondback Energy are considering small nuclear reactors to power drilling operations in Texas’s Permian Basin. And for all those young people that are worried about climate change, wait till we tell them that we’re going to be using small nuclear reactors to power oil drilling. I don’t think they’ll ever leave their safe spaces again.

Natural gas seems to have everything against it but the charts look like they’re trying to turn positive. There is a strong seasonal tendency for the September natural gas to rally over the next month but it’s still facing some incredible hurdles when it comes to the supply side and the lack of winter. This late blast of winter is too little too late to have a meaningful impact but what could have an impact is continued production cuts at some point this comes as the Energy Information Administration touts the fact that the US is the biggest LNG exporter in the world which is a great thing if you want to replace coal around the world.

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Phil Flynn

Senior Market Analyst & Author of The Energy Report

Contributor to FOX Business Network

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