Americas top stories: weekly summary

Author: ICIS Editorial

2021/09/20

HOUSTON (ICIS)--Here are the top stories from ICIS News from the week ended 17 September.

OPEC cuts Q4 crude demand estimates on Delta variant uncertainty
OPEC has cut its forecast for global fourth-quarter crude oil demand on the back of the rise in prevalence of the Delta COVID-19 variant clouding the future demand picture, the cartel said on Monday.

Tropical Storm Nicholas on track to hit Texas coast, heavy rains expected
The Texas Gulf Coast could be threatened with up to 20 inches (51 cm) of rain as Tropical Storm Nicholas churns towards the region, which is expected to make landfall late on Monday near Matagorda Bay in Texas.

Tropical Storm Nicholas could strengthen into hurricane before reaching Texas coast
Tropical Storm Nicholas continues to strengthen as it moves towards the Texas coast and could be near hurricane strength before reaching the Texas coast late Monday, according to the National Hurricane Center (NHC).

Tropical Storm Nicholas to cause life-threatening floods in southern US
Tropical Storm Nicholas is expected to cause “life-threatening” flash floods across the southern US as it approaches Houston, the National Hurricane Center (NHC) said on Tuesday, as hurricane warnings across the region were downgraded.

Minimal impact to plant ops after Nicholas arrives as Category 1 hurricane
Refineries and chemical plants in the US Gulf appeared to have sustained minimal damage as Hurricane Nicholas made landfall late Monday night as a category 1 storm near Matagorda, Texas.

Nicholas spares most US Gulf ops, but remnants could bring heavy rains to Louisiana
Hurricane Nicholas largely spared US Gulf coast refineries and chemical plants after making landfall on Monday night as a category 1 storm. But the remnants could generate heavy rainfall over Louisiana, which is still recovering from Hurricane Ida.

INSIGHT: Global natgas spike threatens US ethylene, PE margins
The surge in global and US natural gas prices could squeeze US ethylene and polyethylene (PE) margins in the coming months.

US gas futures hit new multi-year highs on supply concerns
US natural gas futures prices traded in historic high ranges not seen since February 2014, as the October ’21 front-month contract rallied on supply concerns.

Shipping container rates continue to soar despite increased attention
Container freight rates continue to rise, and despite efforts by global shipping competition agencies and a commitment to freeze rates by some carriers, some players think that prices are unlikely to return to normal until the middle of next year, if ever.

US trade group calls for restrictions on LNG exports
The US trade group Industrial Energy Consumers of America (IECA), which represents industrial companies, urged the US Department of Energy (DOE) on Friday to restrict or limit LNG exports on concerns of rising gas prices.