West Texas Intermediate (WTI), the U.S. benchmark oil price, has shed 16.12% in early trading today, extending Monday’s losses of nearly 25% as the pandemic erased about a third of global oil demand and storage fills up fast. Henry Hub spot gas price fell to $1.65/MMBtu, near parity to the British NBP.
Banks accelerate their exit from coal financing as the credit appeal of mining and coal power plants deteriorates amid faltering electricity demand during the pandemic. Japan’s Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corp (SMBC) and Mizuho Financial Group head for the exit, followed by South Africa’s ABSA bank and Citi Group.
Wärtsilä’s first quarter net sales and earnings have been “materially impacted” by the pandemic. Energy equipment deliveries declined due to project timing and coronavirus-related delays, CEO Jaakko Eskola said. Order intake fell 12% to €1,247 million, almost halving the operating result to €56 million.
European responses to contain the coronavirus accelerate the electricity system transition by a decade, Wärtsilä analysis finds. Coal generation collapsed by almost one third in the four weeks prior to April 10 while renewables contributed half of the reduced EU electricity demand, down by on tenth due to the lockdowns.