May 21, 2019

The grand fall of Venezuelan oil

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Reproduced from a chart by the U.S. Energy Information Administration; Chart: Axios Visuals

Venezuela's oil production has dropped to the lowest level in more than 15 years, driven by widespread power outages, mismanagement of the nation's oil industry, and U.S. sanctions directed at the nation's energy sector, according to new U.S. Energy Information Administration data.

By the numbers: In April 2019, Venezuela's oil production averaged 830,000 barrels per day, down from 1.2 million at the beginning of the year. That's the lowest level since January 2003.

  • "The number of active oil rigs — an indicator of future oil production — also fell from nearly 70 rigs in the first quarter of 2016 to 24 rigs in the first quarter of 2019," EIA states.

The intrigue: Via Bloomberg's Tina Davis: "Venezuela has gone from Latin America's largest oil producer to the fourth-largest, behind Brazil, Mexico and Colombia."

One level deeper: The sanctions on Venezuela — namely their impact on oil prices — could play a role with inflation too.

  • Oil prices hit a 3-week high Monday and are primed to rise further as the possible OPEC production cuts and U.S. sanctions on Venezuela and Iran are further priced into the market.
  • Gas prices have managed to hold throughout much of the U.S. this year, but prices now are facing a doubled-edged sword — the transition to more expensive summer gasoline blends and lower U.S. gasoline stocks, currently at a 7 million barrel deficit from 2018.

Go deeper: Oil prices fall after Venezuela's opposition uprising cools down

Go deeper

Cuomo says New York is "literally going day-to-day with our supplies"

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said in a press conference on Sunday that New York is struggling to maintain medical supplies while combatting the novel coronavirus — operating "literally" on a "day-to-day" basis.

Why it matters: New York City has become an epicenter of the coronavirus outbreak, facing mass quarantines and stay-at-home orders. Cuomo said Saturday that New York reported 630 new deaths in 24 hours — an "all-time increase" that beat the previous day's record of 562 deaths.

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 11 a.m. ET: 1,225,360 — Total deaths: 66,542 — Total recoveries: 252,615Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 11 a.m. ET: 312,249 — Total deaths: 8,503 — Total recoveries: 15,021Map.
  3. Public health latest: CDC launches national trackers and recommends face coverings in public. Federal government will cover costs of COVID-19 treatment for uninsured. Surgeon general says this week will be "our Pearl Harbor, our 9/11 moment."
  4. 2020 latest: "We have no contingency plan," Trump said on the 2020 Republican National Convention. "We're having the convention at the end of August." Biden says DNC may have to hold virtual convention.
  5. States updates: The Louisiana governor warned that his state is set to run out of ventilators in four days. Illinois governor claims Trump doesn't understand the word "federal."
  6. Oil latest: Monday meeting among oil-producing countries to discuss supply curbs is reportedly being delayed amid tensions between Saudi Arabia and Russia.
  7. Work update: Employees still going to work are often facing temperature checks, distanced work stations, protective devices and mass absences.
  8. What should I do? Pets, moving and personal health. Answers about the virus from Axios expertsWhat to know about social distancingQ&A: Minimizing your coronavirus risk.
  9. Other resources: CDC on how to avoid the virus, what to do if you get it.

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Illinois governor: "The president does not understand the word 'federal'"

Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker said on CNN's "State of the Union" Sunday that President Trump's comments about the federal government's stockpile of medical equipment suggest he "does not understand the word 'federal.'"

Why it matters: White House adviser Jared Kushner argued at a press briefing last week that the "notion of the federal stockpile was it’s supposed to be our stockpile; it’s not supposed to be state stockpiles that they then use."