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Expand chart
Data: FactSet; Chart: Axios Visuals

These are wild times for the oil industry. COVID-19 is still hurting demand but there's optimism around vaccines; the incoming Biden administration is vowing new U.S. drilling restrictions, and there are big question marks about the future of global consumption.

But for all the disruption, prices have been remarkably stable since June following their recovery from the depths of April's collapse — stalled at a level that's nonetheless still causing financial pain and jeopardy for producers.

Why it matters: The out of control pandemic and related restrictions are still the most powerful forces in the market, limiting current prices even as analysts see a price rebound next year.

What they're saying: Via Bloomberg...

"Crude seems to have gone as high as it can, said Hans van Cleef, senior energy economist at ABN Amro Bank. 'Oil demand will not fully recover before 2022,' he said. 'Markets may have been a bit too optimistic' about a vaccine rollout."

Go deeper

Jan 19, 2021 - Health

Fauci: U.S. could achieve herd immunity by fall if vaccine rollout goes to plan

NIAID director Anthony Fauci. Photo: Patrick Semansky-Pool/Getty Images

Infectious disease expert Anthony Fauci said on Tuesday that if the coronavirus vaccine rollout by the incoming Biden administration goes as planned, the U.S. could start to see effects of herd immunity and normalcy by early-to-mid fall.

What he's saying: "If we [vaccinate] efficiently in April, May, June, July, August, we should have that degree of protection that could get us back to some form of normality. ... But we've also got to do it on a global scale," he said at a Harvard Business Review virtual event.

Updated 34 mins ago - Health

WHO: Delta health measures help fight Omicron

Photo: Mario Tama/Getty Images

Health measures taken to combat COVID-19 before the emergence of Omicron would also help against the new variant of concern, World Health Organization officials said Friday.

What they're saying: Takeshi Kasai, WHO regional director for the Western Pacific, said during a virtual briefing broadcast from Manila, Philippines, that border controls imposed by the U.S. and other nations can "buy time" to deal with the variant, but warned "every country and every community must prepare for new surges in cases."

2 hours ago - Health

Nevada to impose insurance surcharge on unvaccinated state workers

Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak. Photo: Ethan Miller/Getty Images

Nevada's Public Employees' Benefit Program Board voted Thursday to charge workers enrolled in public employee health insurance plans a surcharge of up to $55 a month if they're not vaccinated against COVID-19, the Las Vegas Review-Journal reports.

Why it matters: Nevada is the first state to announce such a move, per AP.