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Data: FactSet; Chart: Axios Visuals

The price of oil is at all-time low. Even if you put aside the technical factors that caused the May WTI futures contract to close at negative $37.63 per barrel, oil has never been this cheap, in real terms, since the 1973 oil crisis.

Why it matters: Oil, like cash, is based on flows: the number of barrels produced per day, versus the number of barrels consumed. Oil also literally makes the world move: powering cars, trucks, planes, trains and ships. Now that the world has stopped moving, demand is well below supply, and storage capacity is running out.

  • By the numbers: Global oil demand averaged 99.9 million barrels a day last year. April’s oil demand will be 77.6 million barrels a day, estimates Magnus Nysveen, head of analysis at consultancy Rystad Energy.
  • While demand for oil has stopped suddenly, supply of oil can't stop so easily. Capping wells is expensive, and causes lasting damage. And international cooperation is in short supply these days.

Crude oil is dirty, smelly, flammable, and extremely toxic. It's also the chief contributor to global warming. And as we're now seeing, it's a terrible investment.

The bottom line: Oil is providing an object lesson in why currencies are superior to commodities — and certainly shouldn't be linked to commodity prices.

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China led the world in energy growth in 2019

Data: BP; Chart: Axios Visuals

BP's big annual energy data compendium provides a window onto the remarkable growth of China's footprint in global energy markets.

The big picture: "China was by far the biggest individual driver of primary energy growth [in 2019], accounting for more than three quarters of net global growth," the report last week notes.

Updated 7 hours ago - Health

World coronavirus updates

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins; Map: Axios Visuals

India's COVID-19 case numbers surged past 1.7 million on Sunday, as the Ministry of Health reported 54,730 new infections.

By the numbers: More than 685,100 people have died from the novel coronavirus worldwide, per Johns Hopkins data. Over 17.8 million people have tested positive for the virus and almost 10.6 million have recovered.

Amazon's big new $2 billion climate VC fund

Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos. Photo: Andrej Sokolow/picture alliance via Getty Images

Amazon is creating a $2 billion venture fund that will stake companies working on climate-friendly technologies in transportation, storage, food, power generation, waste and more, the tech giant said Tuesday.

Why it matters: The new fund will help Amazon and other companies meet the "climate pledge" that Amazon announced last year to reach net-zero emissions by 2040.