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Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

Oil prices climbed Thursday morning as traders are responding to President Trump's comments yesterday evening that Russia and Saudi Arabia could soon mend fences on oil supply policy, per the Financial Times.

Driving the news: Trump told reporters that he believes, based on his recent calls with Russian President Vladimir Putin and the Saudi crown prince, that "they will work it out over the next few days."

  • Bloomberg also notes that the market is responding to China's plans to start buying oil for its strategic reserves.

Reality check: A note yesterday from Rapidan Energy Group says, "At present we do not expect Riyadh to change course."

  • Their "base case" sees deeper and sustained crude price drops as coronavirus' effects continue hitting demand.
  • They see prices under $20-per-barrel and the "bleak" economic outlook leading to OPEC+ resuming negotiations by early summer, leading to a deal that revives previous quotas and imposes some additional cuts.

What's next: Trump is slated to meet Friday with top executives of large oil companies to discuss potential ways to help the sector that's facing strong economic headwinds as prices and demand have collapsed.

  • The meeting is slated to include CEOs of ExxonMobil and Chevron, as well as big independent producers Occidental and Devon Energy, among others.
  • The prospect of efforts to help the sector is also putting some upward pressure on prices, per multiple reports.

But, but, but: The Wall Street Journal, which first reported the meeting, points out...

"[T]he options are limited for Washington to help beleaguered U.S. oil-and- gas producers, and there are strong differences between major oil companies and some independent shale drillers about whether aggressive government actions are even necessary, making the prospect of any agreement challenging."

Go deeper: Trump's big chill on offshore drilling

Go deeper

Trump impeachment trial to start week of Feb. 8, Schumer says

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer. Photo: The Washington Post via Getty

The Senate will begin former President Trump's impeachment trial the week of Feb. 8, Majority Leader Chuck Schumer announced Friday on the Senate floor.

The state of play: Schumer announced the schedule after reaching an agreement with Republicans. The House will transmit the article of impeachment against the former president late Monday.

1 hour ago - Health

CDC extends interval between COVID vaccine doses for exceptional cases

Photo: Joseph Prezioso/AFP via Getty

Patients can space out the two doses of the coronavirus vaccine by up to six weeks if it’s "not feasible" to follow the shorter recommended window, according to updated guidance from the Centers for Disease and Control and Prevention.

Driving the news: With the prospect of vaccine shortages and a low likelihood that supply will expand before April, the latest changes could provide a path to vaccinate more Americans — a top priority for President Biden.

Texas AG sues Biden administration over deportation freeze

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton speaks to members of the media in 2016. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton is suing the Biden administration in federal district court over its 100-day freeze on deporting unauthorized immigrants, and he's asking for a temporary restraining order.

Between the lines: The freeze went into effect Friday, temporarily halting most immigration enforcement in the U.S. In the lawsuit, Paxton claims the move "violates the U.S. Constitution, federal immigration and administrative law, and a contractual agreement between Texas" and the Department of Homeland Security.

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