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Expand chart
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

Woman who allegedly stole laptop from Pelosi's office to sell to Russia is arrested

Photo: FBI

A woman accused of breaching the Capitol and planning to sell to Russia a laptop or hard drive she allegedly stole from Speaker Nancy Pelosi's office was arrested in Pennsylvania's Middle District Monday, the Department of Justice said.

Driving the news: Riley June Williams, 22, is charged with illegally entering the Capitol as well as violent entry and disorderly conduct. She has not been charged over the laptop allegation and the case remains under investigation, per the DOJ.

Biden will reverse Trump's attempt to lift COVID-related travel restrictions

Photo: Tasos Katopodis via Getty

The incoming Biden administration will reverse President Trump's last-minute order to lift COVID-19 related travel restrictions, Jen Psaki, the incoming White House press secretary, tweeted.

Why it matters: President Trump ordered entry bans lifted for travelers from the U.K., Ireland, Brazil and much of Europe to go into effect Jan. 26, but the Biden administration will "strengthen public health measures around international travel in order to further mitigate the spread of COVID-19," Jen Psaki said. Biden will be inaugurated on Wednesday, Jan. 20 and Trump will no longer be president by the time the order is set to go into effect.

Dominion sends cease and desist letter to My Pillow CEO Mike Lindell

Photo: Stephen Maturen/Getty Images

Dominion Voting Systems on Monday sent a cease and desist letter to My Pillow CEO Mike Lindell over his spread of misinformation related to the 2020 election.

Why it matters: Trump and several of his allies have pushed false conspiracy theories about the company, leading Dominion to take legal action. It's suing pro-Trump lawyer Sidney Powell for defamation and $1.3 billion in damages, and a Dominion employee has sued Trump himself, OANN and Newsmax.