Tuesday, May 31, 2016
Sunday, May 29, 2016
Intersectionality and marxism are not on great terms, supposedly. While some thinkers and activists recognize the need for intersectional insights in research and organizing, others maintain more negative attitudes and analyses towards such insights. The negative attitudes and analyses combine a new resent with the old tension between feminist and poststructuralist critiques of Marxist theory and the latter, sometimes named "identity politics" or "identarian politics." While intersectionalists claim that race, class, and gender (and other categories and discourses) compound, mingle, and mix in unique ways during particular events and experiences, Marxists allege that class trumps all with respect to oppression. The intersectionalists call for specific and particularized redress of compounded oppressions which sometimes do not include class or, in other cases, are lost when class is the sole focus (or any single category of oppression by itself). The Marxists, on the other hand, call for changing the relations of production, focusing on class. Racism, sexism, homophobia, ableism, and other oppressions will be ameliorated, or at least the conditions for their amelioration can only begin, after that shift in exploitative, alienating, and degrading relations of capitalist production. The debate leaves two conflicting camps on the Left. One with a particularized sensitivity to the complex layers of oppression, and the other with a fervent clarity regarding the link in the chain of domination which, if broken, will release the people from their bonds.
Capitalism and Obamacare: The Neoliberal Model Comes Home to Roost in the United States - If We Let It: I The Hampton Institute
As the Affordable Care Act (ACA, otherwise known as Obamacare) continues along a very bumpy road, it is worth asking where it came from and what comes next. Officially, Obamacare represents the latest in more than a century of efforts in the United States to achieve universal access to health care. In reality, Obamacare has strengthened the for-profit insurance industry by transferring public, tax-generated revenues to the private sector. It has done and will do little to improve the problem of uninsurance in the United States; in fact, it has already begun to worsen the problem of underinsurance. Obamacare is also financially unsustainable because it has no effective way to control costs. Meanwhile, despite benefits for some of the richest corporations and executives, and adverse or mixed effects for the non-rich, a remarkable manipulation of political symbolism has conveyed the notion that Obamacare is a creation of the left, warranting strenuous opposition from the right.
on Monday of this past week, the U.S. Energy Information Administration posted a fairly routine article on their daily blog (Today in Energy) titled United States remains largest producer of petroleum and natural gas hydrocarbons....the article featured a graph of our production of gas and oil vis a vis that of Russia and Saudi Arabia and went on to tell the familiar story about how fracking made it possible for our output of gas and oil to pass that of Russia in 2012, and that, as the headline indicates, we're still on top...as the week progressed, copies of the graphic from that post started showing up on other sites around the web, some to put an emphasis on that "we're number one" aspect that it showed, some to disparage the Saudis, who by the looks of that graph, barely come close...so i thought it would be instructive to take a look at that graph, and see what it shows, and more importantly, what it doesn't show...
the above bar graph, from the EIA's Monday blog post, shows the annual oil & gas output for the US, Russia, & Saudi Arabia since 2008 in both quadrillion BTUs (scale on left margin) and in millions of barrels of oil equivalent (right margin)...for each year, US output is represented by blue colors, Russian output is represented by brown and tan, and Saudi output is represented by brick red and pink, with the darker portion of each bar indicating crude oil output and the lighter shade representing natural gas output...thus, even though Saudi output of natural gas is dwarfed by that of the US and Russia, we can still see by looking at the darker portions of those bars that they (in dark red) led the world in crude oil output up to 2013, when the graph shows the US (dark blue) overtook them...
now, if you've been paying attention to the barrage of oil numbers we run through each week, you'll recall that the weekly EIA data on production of crude oil from US wells that we quote each week has shown that early this year our output of crude dropped below the 9 million barrel per day level, after being as high as 9.6 million barrels per day in mid-2015...but the graph above appears to indicate that our oil output topped 15 million barrels per day in 2015...why the discrepancy? it's because the EIA includes a number of other hydrocarbon liquids in their broadest definition of oil, which thereby inflates our total "oil" output...if we check the weekly petroleum balance sheet (pdf) from the EIA, we see in the second section headed "Petroleum Supply" there are two subheadings, "Crude Oil Supply" and "Other Supply"...under "Other Supply", they include our weekly output of "Natural Gas Plant Liquids", "Renewable Fuels", which includes ethanol, and "Refinery Processing Gain"..."Natural Gas Plant Liquids" are those hydrocarbons, primarily ethane, propane, butane, and isobutane, in natural gas that separate from the methane gas as liquids either in gathering or processing; they're valuable as a petrochemical feedstock but we can't refine gasoline from them... "Refinery Processing Gain" is the difference in barrels between the refinery crude input and product output that occurs because the products have a lower specific gravity than the crude oil processed...
so, looking at that weekly petroleum balance sheet (dynamic link, changes weekly) again to get an idea of the volume of this other supply, we see that year to date crude oil output for the first 5 months of 2015 averaged 9,327,000 barrels per day, while "other supply" averaged 5,172,000 barrels per day over the same period...that means crude oil was only averaging about 64% of our petroleum output in that part of 2015 (it's actually much less now), while natural gas liquids accounted for 21% and biofuels accounted for 7% of our so-called petroleum output...
now, from the output figures indicated above for the Russians and the Saudis, i can see that their "petroleum output" was accounted for in the same manner, so there's no deceit in that graph...but when most think about petroleum output, they're thinking of the dark colored viscous liquid as it comes out of the ground, not ethanol or the lighter liquids that condense during natural gas processing...for that kind of crude oil, US output averaged 9.4 million barrels per day in 2015; while the Saudis produced nearly 10.2 million barrels a day of crude at the same time, up from their 9.5 million in 2014, and while Russian output averaged over 10.2 million barrels per day in 2015, and they're now producing 10.49 barrels of real crude per day as of their latest report....even the EIA itself said that Russia is world's largest producer of crude oil and lease condensate on that same blog less than a year ago, in an analysis which didn't include US natural gas plant liquids or ethanol in the comparison....so when you see an article or hear someone say that the US has become the largest producer of oil, you know that they, or the source they're quoting, is including all those liquids we've just shown are included under 'other supply' by the EIA...
while we're comparing the world's top producers of fossil fuels, there's one more aspect of that comparison that we should bring up...you already know that the Saudis export most of what they produce; according to OPEC data, the Saudis export 7,153,000 barrels per days of crude oil and 2,202,000 barrels per day of refined products; that suggests they're exporting more than 90% of what they produce....the Russians are major exporters too; in 2014, Russia exported 4.7 million barrels per day of crude oil, almost 50% of their output, with 72% of that going to Europe and most of the rest to Asia...and just this week we learned that they even topped the Saudis as the top supplier to China, as Russian oil exports to China jumped 52.4% year over year to a record high in April...at the same time, Russian exports of natural gas are making their way to almost every country in Europe through a number of pipelines...according to the EIA, Russia exported 7.1 trillion cubic feet of gas in 2014, about one-third of their output, with Germany, Turkey, Italy, and Belarus accounting for more than half of that....in 2015, the state gas company Gazprom supplied 158.56 billion cubic meters of gas to European countries, with approximately 82% of the company’s exports going to western Europe....with the addition of the new Nord Stream-2 gas pipeline from Russia to Germany, Russian exports of gas have increased by 44% to Germany, by 42% to Italy, and by 73% to France since the beginning of this year....
so how about the US, who according to the EIA now produces more oil and gas than either Russia or the Saudis...well, since we cover US oil imports every week, i dont have to tell you that the US is still importing almost as much oil as it ever has...in February, the last full month we have confirmed data for, we imported 229,402,000 barrels of oil, the most in any February in 4 years and only 18% below the record February 2006 imports of 279,530,000 barrels....but to be fair, we're also exporting refined products at the same time, so we should subtract those exports to find out what our net imports are...conveniently, the EIA's weekly petroleum balance sheet (pdf) gives us that net figure, so we dont have to dig out each of the contributing data sets...on line 33 of that balance sheet, they give us a total for "Net Imports of Crude and Petroleum Products", which was at 5,946,000 barrels per day for the week ending May 20th...for 2015 year to date, our net imports of oil & oil products were averaging 5,215,000 barrels per day...so despite the fact that our 2015 "oil production" of more than 15 million barrels a day was so much more than major exporters Russia and Saudi Arabia, we still found it necessary to import more than 5 million more barrels a day to meet our gluttonous needs...
well, how about natural gas? surely, with the glut of gas we've seen in this part of the country, where prices for stranded natural gas fell to pennies per mmBTU this past winter, we must have such a surplus of gas that we wouldn't be importing that, too. well, no. even though you'll often run into those who say we're a gas exporter, we are also still a net importer of natural gas, despite being the top producer by far globally, as the graph above indicates...while earlier this year the first LNG export tanker set sail for Europe, up until then the only LNG tankers we'd see were those that were unloading here, from LNG exporters such as Norway, Trinidad, and Yemen...the Natural Gas Imports and Exports Fourth Quarter Report for 2015 from the Dept of Energy, which incorporates annual figures for the year, indicates that our imports of natural gas totaled 2788.3 billion cubic feet in 2015, with 96.7% of that coming from Canada, while our exports of natural gas totaled 1771.9 billion cubic feet BCF, with nearly 60% of that going to Mexico, while almost 40% was exported back to Canada...for those interested in the details, that 163 page pdf actually shows the volume of our gas imports and exports by point of entry and point of exit, even including by truck....the point is that our imports of natural gas still exceed our exports, which can be seen in the EIA graph of our net imports below...
the above graph comes from the EIA's data series on our monthly net natural gas imports; in other words, our imports minus our exports, since 1990....while we can see that our net imports of natural gas are down considerably from the 300 billion cubic feet per month level we saw during the prefracking era between 2000 and 2007, we're still importing more than 100 billion cubic feet per month of natural gas during the winter months...despite the glut of natural gas that developed this year as a result of the warm winter, our net imports were still at the 103 billion cubic feet per month level in January and at 87 billion cubic feet level in February, the last month we have confirmed data for...although the graph we posted to open this section gives our gas production in barrels of oil equivalents, the EIA gives our total production for 2015 at 27,096 billion cubic feet...the annual version of the above chart indicates our net imports for the year were 935 billion cubic feet, meaning we are still importing nearly 4% of the natural gas we use...
The Latest Oil Stats from the EIA
this week's oil data for the week ending May 20th indicated a rather large drop in our imports of crude oil, however, as it now includes a full week without imports from Alberta Canada, where pipelines still remain shut off after the Fort McMurray wildfire roared through the oil sands camps...and although refining was off a bit from last week, the large 480,000 barrel per day fudge factor of last week was unnecessary, because the data showed the largest withdrawal of crude from storage in 7 weeks...Wednesday's reports from the Energy Information Administration showed that our imports of crude oil fell by 362,000 barrels per day, from an average of 7,677,000 barrels per day during the week ending May 13th to an average of 7,315,000 barrels per day during the week ending May 20th ...however, that was still 9.2% more than the 6,696,000 barrels of oil per day we imported during the week ending May 22nd a year ago, and hence the EIA's weekly Petroleum Status Report (62 pp pdf) reports that the 4 week moving average of our oil imports remains at the 7.6 million barrel per day level, which was 10.9% more than our oil import rate of the same four-week period last year...
at the same time, this week's data showed that production of crude oil from US wells fell by 24,000 barrels per day, from an average of 8,791,000 barrels per day during the week ending May 13th to an average of 8,767,000 barrels per day during the week ending May 20th....that was 8.4% below the 9,566,000 barrels per day that we were producing during the third week of May last year, and 8.8% below the 9,610,000 barrel per day peak of our oil production that we saw during the week ending June 10th of last year...our oil production has now been down 17 out of the last 18 weeks and has now dropped by 452,000 barrels per day since the first of the year....
as we mentioned earlier, refinery processing of crude oil also slipped somewhat this week, at a time of year refineries are usually ramping up, as US refineries used 16,279,000 barrels of oil per day during the week ending May 20th, 139,000 barrels per day less than the average of 16,371,000 barrels of oil per day barrels they processed during the week ending May 13th...the US refinery utilization rate fell to 89.7% of operable capacity last week, down from a 90.5% capacity utilization rate during the week ending May 13th...and that's way below the 93.6% capacity utilization rate of the week ending May 22nd last year, when US refineries were using an average of 16,450,000 barrels of crude each day...
with less oil being refined, our refinery production of gasoline fell by 131,000 barrels per day, averaging 9,866,000 barrels per day during the week ending May 20th, down from the average 9,997,000 barrels of gasoline per day they produced during the week ending May 13th...that was 2.9% less than the 10,164,000 barrels of gasoline per day we were producing during the same week last year...at the same time, our refinery output of distillate fuels (diesel fuel and heat oil) also decreased, falling by 109,000 barrels per day to 4,661,000 barrels per day during week ending May 20th...that was 4.7% lower than our distillates production of 4,891,000 barrels per day during the same week of 2015...
however, even with the drop in gasoline production, our gasoline inventories rose by 2,496,000 barrels to 240,111,000 barrels on May 20th, up from the 238,068,000 barrels of gasoline we had stored on May 6th...that was the largest increase in gasoline inventories since the 2nd week of February and it came at a time of year when gasoline inventories are usually in decline...factors contributing to that buildup of gasoline stocks included a 242,000 barrel per day increase in our imports of gasoline, which rose to 933,000 barrels per day, and a 239,000 barrel per day drop to 9,516,000 barrels per day in the amount of gasoline supplied to US markets, which last week was flirting with an all time high...so now our gasoline supplies are now 8.8% higher than the 220,627,000 barrels of gasoline that we had stored on May 20th last year, and still categorized as "well above the upper limit of the average range" for this time of year, which you can clearly see in the graph below, where normal supply levels for this time of year are indicated by the shaded area on the graph....
at the same time, our distillate fuel inventories fell by 1,284,000 barrels to end the week at 150,878,000 barrels, as diesel fuel was withdrawn from storage in all PADD districts except for the east coast...however, because distillate inventories were already bloated after a warmer than normal winter reduced heat oil consumption, our distillate inventories remained 17.1% higher than the 128,839,000 barrels of distillates we had stored at the same time last year, and thus they're also characterized as "well above the upper limit of the average range" for this time of year...
finally, with the decrease in crude imports and with a fudge factor of just 17,000 barrels per day, we found it necessary to draw oil from our stocks of crude oil in storage, which fell by 4,226,000 barrels from last week to 537,068,000 barrels as of May 20th...still, that was 12.0% higher than the 479,363,000 barrels of oil we had stored as of May 22nd, 2015, and 36.7% higher than the 392,954,000 barrels of oil we had stored on May 23rd of 2014....though our supply of oil stored above ground (not counting what's in the government's Strategic Petroleum Reserve) is down by 6,236,000 barrels from the record high of 543,394,000 barrels set 3 weeks ago, our inventories are still up by 54,744,000 barrels since the beginning of the year...
This Week's Rig Count
for the first time in the last 12 weeks, we did not see a new record low for the number of drilling rigs deployed in the US...we did not see an increase in drilling, either, as Baker Hughes reported that the total count of active rotary rigs running in the US was unchanged from last week at 404 rigs as of May 27th...that was still down from the 875 rigs that were working on May 29th last year, and down from the recent high of 1929 rigs that were deployed on November 21st of 2014... the count of rigs drilling for oil was down 2 to 316, which was also down from the 646 rigs targeting oil that were in use a year earlier, and down from the recent high of 1609 working oil rigs that was reported on October 10, 2014, while the count of drilling rigs targeting natural gas formations rose by 2 rigs to 87, which was down from the 225 natural gas rigs that were drilling a year ago, and down from the recent natural gas rig high of 1,606 rigs that was set on August 29th, 2008...there was also one rig deployed that was classified as miscellaneous, unchanged from last week but down from the 4 miscellaneous rigs that were operating a year ago....
the rig count summary indicates that an additional rig was set up on an inland body of water, but unfortunately the Baker Hughes state totals do not show where, as the 4 states having an inland water rig category (Texas, Alabama, Louisiana and Florida) were all listed as unchanged...the count of working horizontal drilling rigs was unchanged at 314 rigs this week, which was still down from the 674 horizontal rigs that were in use on May 29th of last year, and down from the recent record of 1372 horizontal rigs that were deployed on November 21st of 2014...meanwhile, a net of 2 vertical rigs were pulled out this week, leaving 46 vertical rigs still working, which was down from the 111 vertical rigs that were in use at the end of the same week a year earlier...at the same time, the directional rig count rose by 2 rigs to 44, which was still down from the 90 directional rigs that were deployed in the US during the same week last year...
for the details on which states and which shale basins saw changes in drilling activity this past week, we're again going to include a screenshot of that part of this week's rig count summary from Baker Hughes, which shows those changes... the first table below shows weekly and annual rig count changes by state, and the second table shows weekly and annual rig count changes for the major geological oil and gas basins...in both tables, the first column shows the active rig count as of May 27th, the second column shows the change in the number of working rigs from the prior week, the third column shows last weeks rig count, the 4th column shows the change in the number of rigs running from the same week a year ago, and the 5th column shows the number of rigs that were drilling at the end of that week a year ago, which in this case was May 29th of 2015:
as you can see from the above, it really was a quiet week as far as rig activity goes; only a few states saw changes, with none greater than the two rigs that were added in Oklahoma...you'll note that a rig was added in the Utica this week, where there are now 11 rigs working, down from 25 a year ago, while the rig count in Ohio is thus similarly up to 11, down from 23 a year ago, and down from 50 at the peak...also note that the shut down of the single rig that had been operating in Nebraska was missed by this overview; there had been 2 rigs operating in that state a year ago, now there are none...
Friday, May 27, 2016
Wednesday, May 25, 2016
Tuesday, May 24, 2016
Here’s how much Hillary Clinton was paid for her 2013-2015 speeches:
- 4/18/2013, Morgan Stanley, Washington, DC: $225,000
- 4/24/2013, Deutsche Bank, Washington, DC: $225,000
- 4/24/2013, National Multi Housing Council, Dallas, Texas: $225,000
- 4/30/2013, Fidelity Investments, Naples, Fla.: $225,000
- 5/8/2013, Gap Inc., San Francisco, Calif.: $225,000
- 5/14/2013, Apollo Management Holdings LP, New York, NY: $225,000
- 5/16/2013, Itau BBA USA Securities, New York, NY:$225,000
- 5/21/2013, Vexizon Communications Inc., Washington, DC: $225,000
- 5/29/2013, Sanford C. Bernstein and Co. LLC, New York, NY: $225,000
- 6/4/2013, The Goldman Sachs Group, Palmetto Bluffs, SC: $225,000
- 6/6/2013, Spencer Stuart, New York, NY: $225,000
- 6/16/2013, Society for Human Resource Management, Chicago, Ill.: $285,000
- 6/17/2013, Economic Club of Grand Rapids, Grand Rapids, Mich.: $225,000
- 6/20/2013, Boston Consulting Group Inc., Boston, Mass.: $225,000
- 6/20/2013, Let’s Talk Entertainment Inc., Toronto, Canada: $250,000
- 6/24/2013, American Jewish University, Universal City, Calif.: $225,000
- 6/24/2013, Kohlberg Kravis Roberts and Company LP, Palos Verdes, Calif.: $225,000
- 7/11/2013, UBS Wealth Management, New York, NY:$225,000
- 8/7/2013, Global Business Travel Association, San Diego, Calif.: $225,000
- 8/12/2013, National Association of Chain Drug Stores, Las Vegas, Nev.: $225,000
- 9/18/2013, American Society for Clinical Pathology, Chicago, Ill.: $225,000
- 9/19/2013, American Society of Travel Agents Inc., Miami, Fla.: $225,000
- 10/4/2013, Long Island Association, Long Island, NY:$225,000
- 10/15/2013, National Association of Convenience Stores, Atlanta, Ga.: $265,000
- 10/23/2013, SAP Global Marketing Inc., New York, NY:$225,000
- 10/24/2013, Accenture, New York, NY: $225,000
- 10/24/2013, The Goldman Sachs Group, New York, NY:$225,000
- 10/27/2013, Beth El Synagogue, Minneapolis, Minn.:$225,000
- 10/28/2013, Jewish United Fund/Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago, Chicago, Ill.: $400,000
- 10/29/2013, The Goldman Sachs Group, Tuscon, Ariz.:$225,000
- 11/4/2013, Mase Productions Inc., Orlando, Fla.:$225,000
- 11/4/2013, London Drugs Ltd., Mississauga, Canada:$225,000
- 11/6/2013, Beaumont Health System, Troy, Mich.:$305,000
- 11/7/2013, Golden Tree Asset Management, New York, NY: $275,000
- 11/9/2013, National Association of Realtors, San Francisco, Calif.: $225,000
- 11/13/2013, Mediacorp Canada Inc., Toronto, Canada:$225,000
- 11/13/2013, Bank of America, Bluffton, SC: $225,000
- 11/14/2013, CB Richard Ellis Inc., New York, NY:$250,000
- 11/18/2013, CIIE Group, Naples, Fla.: $225,000
- 11/18/2013, Press Ganey, Orlando, Fla.: $225,000
- 11/21/2013, U.S. Green Building Council, Philadelphia, Pa.: $225,000
- 01/06/2014, GE, Boca Raton, Fla.: $225,500
- 01/27/2014, National Automobile Dealers Association, New Orleans, La.: $325,500
- 01/27/2014, Premier Health Alliance, Miami, Fla.:$225,500
- 02/06/2014, , Las Vegas, Nev.:$225,500
- 02/17/2014, Novo Nordisk A/S, Mexico City, Mexico:$125,000
- 02/26/2014, Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society, Orlando, Fla.: $225,500
- 02/27/2014, A&E Television Networks, New York, NY:$280,000
- 03/04/2014, Association of Corporate Counsel – Southern California, Los Angeles, Calif.: $225,500
- 03/05/2014, The Vancouver Board of Trade, Vancouver, Canada: $275,500
- 03/06/2014, tinePublic Inc., Calgary, Canada:$225,500
- 03/13/2014, Pharmaceutical Care Management Association, Orlando, Fla.: $225,500
- 03/13/2014, Drug Chemical and Associated Technologies, New York, NY: $250,000
- 03/18/2014, Xerox Corporation, New York, NY:$225,000
- 03/18/2014, Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal, Montreal, Canada: $275,000
- 03/24/2014, Academic Partnerships, Dallas, Texas:$225,500
- 04/08/2014, Market° Inc., San Francisco, Calif.:$225,500
- 04/08/2014, World Affairs Council, Portland, Ore.:$250,500
- 04/10/2014, Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries Inc., Las Vegas, Nev.: $225,500
- 04/10/2014, Lees Talk Entertainment, San Jose, Calif.:$265,000
- 04/11/2014, California Medical Association (via satellite), San Diego, Calif.: $100,000
- 05/06/2014, National Council for Behavioral Healthcare, Washington, DC: $225,500
- 06/02/2014, International Deli-Dairy-Bakery Association, Denver, Colo.: $225,500
- 06/02/2014, Lees Talk Entertainment, Denver, Colo.:$265,000
- 06/10/2014, United Fresh Produce Association, Chicago, Ill.: $225,000
- 06/16/2014, tinePublic Inc., Toronto, Canada: $150,000
- 06/18/2014, tinePublic Inc., Edmonton, Canada:$100,000
- 06/20/2014, Innovation Arts and Entertainment, Austin, Texas: $150,000
- 06/25/2014, Biotechnology Industry Organization, San Diego, Calif.: $335,000
- 06/25/2014, Innovation Arts and Entertainment, San Francisco, Calif.: $150,000
- 06/26/2014, GTCR, Chicago, Ill.: $280,000
- 07/22/2014, Knewton Inc., San Francisco, Calif.:$225,500
- 07/26/2014, Ameriprise, Boston, Mass.: $225,500
- 07/29/2014, Coming Inc., Coming, NY: $225,500
- 08/28/2014, Nexenta Systems Inc., San Francisco, Calif.: $300,000
- 08/28/2014, Cisco, Las Vegas, Nev.: $325,000
- 09/04/2014, Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd LLP, San Diego, Calif.: $225,500
- 09/15/2014, Caridovascular Research Foundation, Washington, DC: $275,000
- 10/02/2014, Commercial Real Estate Women Network, Miami Beach, Fla.: $225,500
- 10/06/2014, Canada 2020, Ottawa, Canada: $215,500
- 10/07/2014, Deutsche Bank AG, New York, NY:$280,000
- 10/08/2014, Advanced Medical Technology Association (AdvaMed), Chicago, Ill.: $265,000
- 10/13/2014, Council of Insurance Agents and Brokers, Colorado Springs, Colo.: $225,500
- 10/14/2014, , San Francisco, Calif.:$225,500
- 10/14/2014, Qualcomm Incorporated, San Diego, Calif.:$335,000
- 12/04/2014, Massachusetts Conference for Women, Boston, Mass.: $205,500
- 01/21/2015, tinePublic Inc., Winnipeg, Canada:$262,000
- 01/21/2015, tinePublic Inc., Saskatoon, Canada:$262,500
- 01/22/2015, Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, Whistler, Canada: $150,000
- 02/24/2015, Watermark Silicon Valley Conference for Women, Santa Clara, Calif.: $225,500
- 03/11/2015, eBay Inc., San Jose, Calif.: $315,000
- 03/19/2015, American Camping Association, Atlantic City, NJ: $260,000
Monday, May 23, 2016
Sunday, May 22, 2016
an update on oil prices & what's moving them, another big fudge in EIA data, rig count still edging down..
we haven't covered the ongoing increase in the price of oil while we've been focused on the Utica shale over the past couple weeks, so we'll try to catch up on that first...the major factors that have been influencing oil prices over the past three weeks have been disruptions in the output of several producing counties that have reduced the total supply of oil to US and global markets....the largest of those disruptions, and the one having the most impact on the US, has been the out of control wildfires that have been burning for 3 weeks in the tar sands area of Alberta province in Canada and have now consumed a million and a quarter acres...that tar sands fire story has received fairly extensive coverage as it caused the evacuation of Fort McMurray, Alberta's 3rd largest city, and knocked out an estimated 1 million barrels, or 40%, of Canada's daily oil production...over the same period, there was an acceleration of rebel attacks on oil facilities and pipelines in Nigeria over the past two weeks, which started with 3,153 incidences of pipeline puncturings over the 12 months ending March and culminated in full scale attacks which shut down Chevron and Shell export terminals the week before last, shutting in 250,000 barrels per day of oil exports from Shell and 160,000 barrels per day from the Chevron operation and up tp as many as 800,000 barrels per day as Eni production was later knocked out...those and other disruptions prompted Goldman Sachs, who had been forecasting $20 a barrel oil earlier this year, to turn bullish on oil prices, driving US crude oil prices up $1.51 a barrel to close at $47.72 on Monday of this week after hitting a six-month high earlier that day...they included a graphic timeline of the current and expected oil supply disruptions along with their revised forecast, a copy of which we're including below...
the above graphic, taken from an article at Zero Hedge about the disruptions impacting the price of oil, shows a timeline of those oil production shutdowns that have taken place or are expected to continue over the period from February to December of this year...countries which have had or will have their oil output impacted are color coded across the bottom of the graphic, and the period and size of the expected oil output disruption is thus shown by the width of the corresponding band in the graphic, with the size of the disruption indicated in thousands of barrels of oil per day on the scale on the left....for instance, the March Kirkuk-Ceyhan oil pipeline sabotage, shown in grey, shut down Iraq's largest crude oil export line and knocked out over 500,000 barrels per day for almost a month, and as deliveries to Turkey are not expected to resume, an ~ 200,000 barrel per day grey bar extends from that outage through December, indicating expected future losses...in the current period, we see a large spike of 1,000,000 barrels per day of oil lost as a result of the Canadian fires in a smokey blue-grey color, the Nigerian shutdown in the darkest blue on the graph, and the Libyan export shutdown in red, all starting at roughly the same time, leading to nearly two and a half million barrels of oil being lost to the oil markets as of the current period, or enough to actually create a shot term oil deficit...while we see that Goldman expects the Canadian situation to be resolved by June, they expect Libyan supplies to be curtailed till August, and expect less that half of the Nigerian output to be restored before the end of the year...to show you how all of these oil supply disruptions have affected the price of oil, we'll include a graph of US oil prices below...
the above graph comes from a page at WTRG Economics which has the specifications for the WTI oil contract and it shows the daily closing price of the current oil contract over the past year...thus, unlike the graph we usually use, this graph shows the price of oil for June delivery from April 20th to May 20th, and before that shows the price of oil for May delivery from March 22nd to April 20th (trading for each contract expires on the third business day prior to the 25th calendar day of the month prior to the delivery month)...thus this graph captures the price of oil that's quoted daily by the media, and also shows when the price of oil for March delivery dropped as low as $26 a barrel in mid-February, a low never reached by other contracts....this week, the price of oil ran up to close as high as $48.35 a barrel on Wednesday, before falling back on the surprise report of an inventory buildup, to close the week at $47.75 a barrel as indicated, still up almost 4% for the week...as it turns out, the June oil contract expired on Friday, and hence the contract for July delivery, now priced at $48.41 a barrel, is now being quoted as the current price of oil....
The Latest US Oil Stats and Fudge Factor from the EIA
we're going to start off our review of the Petroleum Status reports for the week ending May 13th from the Energy Information Administration with the adjustment on line 13 of the EIA balance sheet (pdf), because this week's adjustment is by far the most significant change in the accounting of where our oil came from and where it went this week...to review, the footnote for line 13 identifies the adjustment as "Unaccounted-for Crude Oil, a balancing item"....the Glossary at the end of the EIA's weekly Petroleum Status Report (62 pp pdf) further explains that "Unaccounted-for Crude Oil represents the arithmetic difference between the calculated supply and the calculated disposition of crude oil. The calculated supply is the sum of crude oil production plus imports minus changes in crude oil stocks. The calculated disposition of crude oil is the sum of crude oil input to refineries, crude oil exports, crude oil burned as fuel, and crude oil losses."...as we pointed out last week, data for each of the oil statistics presented by the EIA weekly is collected and published separately, and often times they don't add up, due to variations in the samplings used for each statistic, so that adjustment line is essentially a fudge factor to account for the differences between the amount of oil coming into the system every day and the amount of oil going out, either as products used by consumers or as barrels stored...
the adjustment thus described this week was a positive 480,000 barrels per day...that means that the apparent amount of oil that ended up in refinery products or in storage or otherwise used at the end of the week was 480,000 barrels per day more than we should have had based on our oil production and imports over the same period....compounding that error in this week's data, last week's adjustment was minus 375,000 barrels of oil per day, meaning 375,000 barrels of oil that we appeared to have produced or imported last week did not show up in the final figures...does that mean that oil that disappeared last week showed up this week? that could be part of what happened, but these statistical discrepancies don't always end up resolved at the end of any given period; for instance, over the last 4 weeks, the adjustment has averaged +107,000 barrels per day; year to date, the average is minus 60,000 barrels per day...the more important point is that our week to week comparisons become meaningless when there is a total swing in the adjustment of 855,000 barrels per day, or almost one-tenth the level of our production, from last week to this week, as the change in the fudge factor dwarfs the changes in all the important metrics..
with that in mind, then, this week's data showed production of crude oil from US wells fell by 11,000 barrels per day, from an average of 8,802,000 barrels per day during the week ending May 6th to an average of 8,791,000 barrels per day during the week ending May 13th ....that was 6.7% below the 9,419,000 barrels per day that we were producing during the second week of May last year, and 8.5% below the 9,610,000 barrel per day peak of our oil production that we saw during the week ending June 10th of last year...our oil production has now been down 16 out of the last 17 weeks and has now dropped by 444,000 barrels per day since the week ending January 15th...
meanwhile, the EIA reported that our imports of crude oil rose by 22,000 barrels per day, from an average of 7,655,000 barrels per day during the week ending May 6th to an average of 7,677,000 barrels per day during the week ending May 13th ...that was 6.6% more than the 6,881,000 barrels of oil per day we imported during the week ending May 15th a year ago, while the EIA's weekly Petroleum Status Report (62 pp pdf) reports that the 4 week moving average of our oil imports has slipped to the 7.6 million barrel per day level, which was still 8.8% more than our oil import rate of the same four-week period last year...
with the apparent supply of oil thus little changed from last week, inputs of crude oil into US refineries increased by 192,000 barrels per day during the week ending May 13th from the prior week, averaging 16,371,000 barrels per day, now almost 1.0% higher than the 16,213,000 barrels per day US refineries were using during the same week last year....the US refinery utilization rate rose to 90.5% from 89.1% the prior week, but it's still well below the 92.4% utilization rate for US refineries that we saw during the week ending May 15th last year...so with the US supply of crude from imports and oilfields fairly flat and US refineries using 192,000 barrels per day more than last week, you'd figure that refineries would have had to pull some oil out of storage to meet their needs, wouldn't you? well, that's not what the EIA reported; they say that we had a surplus of crude, and hence our stockpiles of crude oil in storage increased by 1,310,000 barrels to 541,294,000 barrels as of May 13th...that's the second highest week end total we've ever seen, topped only by the 543,394,000 barrels we had stored on April 29th....it's also 12.3% higher than the 482,165,000 barrels of oil we had stored as of May 15th, 2015, and 38.3% higher than the 391,297,000 barrels of oil we had stored on May 16th of 2014....
at any rate, even with more oil apparently being refined, our refinery production of gasoline fell by 54,000 barrels per day, averaging 9,997,000 barrels per day during the week ending May 13th, down from the average 10,051,000 barrels of gasoline per day produced during the week ending May 6th...that was 3.6% more than the 9,651,000 barrels of gasoline per day we were producing during the same week last year, however, as our year to date gasoline output is still running well ahead of last years pace...at the same time, our refinery output of distillate fuels (diesel fuel and heat oil) increased, rising by 160,000 barrels per day to 4,770,000 barrels per day during week ending May 13th, which was still 1.5% lower than our distillates production of 4,844,000 barrels per day during the same week of 2015...
even with the elevated level of gasoline production, our gasoline inventories fell by 2,496,000 barrels to 238,068,000 barrels, from the 240,564,000 barrels of gasoline we had stored on May 6th...that was as our imports of gasoline fell by 88,000 barrels per day to 691,000 barrels per day during the week ending May 13th, and as the gasoline supplied to US markets rose by 97,000 barrels per day to a near record 9,755,000 barrels per day, just shy of the 9,762,000 barrel per day record gasoline consumption we saw during the week ending August 18th of 2007...but despite the big drawdown of gasoline supplies, this week's gasoline supplies were still 6.3% higher than the 223,936,000 barrels of gasoline that we had stored on May 15th last year, and thus our gasoline stores are still categorized as "well above the upper limit of the average range" for this time of year..
our distillate fuel inventories also fell, dropping by 3,170,000 barrels to end the week at 152,162,000 barrels....that's a fairly normal spring planting season drawdown on distillates supplies, and since distillate inventories were already elevated after the warmer than normal winter reduced heat oil consumption, distillate inventories are still 19.1% higher than the 127,724,000 barrels of distillates we had stored at the same time last year...thus, like gasoline, our stores of distillates are also still characterized as "well above the upper limit of the average range" for this time of year...
This Week's Rig Count
this week saw the smallest net drop in the the number of active rigs drilling in the US thus far this year, but it was still a drop from the record low of last week, so once again we have another record low for drilling activity this week, as the US rig count has now dropped for 39 weeks in a row and set new all time lows for the past 11 consecutive weeks.....Baker Hughes reported that the total count of active rotary rigs running in the US was down by 2 rigs to 404 rigs as of May 20th, which was also down from the 885 rigs that were working as of the May 22nd report last year, and down from the recent high of 1929 rigs that were deployed on November 21st of 2014... the count of rigs drilling for oil was unchanged at 318, which was still down from the 659 oil directed rigs that were in use a year earlier, and down from the recent high of 1609 working oil rigs that was reported on October 10, 2014, while the count of drilling rigs targeting natural gas formations fell by 2 to a record low 85, which was down from the 222 natural gas rigs that were drilling a year ago, and down from the recent natural gas rig high of 1,606 rigs that was set on August 29th, 2008...there was also one rig deployed that was classified as miscellaneous, unchanged from last week but down from the 4 miscellaneous that were operating a year ago....
there were, however, rigs added both offshore and on inland waters this week...a net of two more drilling platforms were deployed in the Gulf of Mexico this week than last; that came as the lone platform offshore of Texas was shut down and three started drilling offshore of Louisiana...those changes brought the Gulf of Mexico active rig count back up to 23, still down from 28 a year ago, and brought the total offshore count up to 24, down from 29 a year ago....at the same time, there were also 3 rigs set up to drill through inland lakes in southern Louisiana this week, which brought the inland waters rig count up to 5, up from the 3 rigs that were deployed drilling on inland waters at the end of the same week last year...
the count of working horizontal drilling rigs was down by 1 rig to 314 rigs this week, which was down from the 683 horizontal rigs that were in use on May 22nd of last year, and down from the recent record of 1372 horizontal rigs that were deployed on November 21st of 2014...at the same time, 5 vertical rigs were also stacked, leaving 48 vertical rigs still working, which was down from the 117 vertical rigs that were in use at the end of the same week a year earlier...however, the directional rig count rose by 4 rigs to 42, which was still down from the 85 directional rigs that were up and running in the US during the same week last year...
for the details on which states and which shale basins saw changes in drilling activity this past week, we're again going to include a screenshot of that part of the rig count summary from Baker Hughes, which shows those changes... the first table below shows weekly and annual rig count changes by state, and the second table shows weekly and annual rig count changes for the major geological oil and gas basins...in both tables, the first column shows the active rig count as of May 20th, second column shows the change in the number of working rigs from the prior week, the third column shows last weeks rig count, the fourth column shows the change in the number of rigs running from the same week a year ago, and the 5th column shows the number of rigs that were drilling at the end of that week a year ago, which in this case was May 22nd of 2015:
we can see from these tables that this week's net change of two rigs hides a lot of changes in activity that one wouldn't notice without checking these details...for instance, in the second table we see that the Permian basin of western Texas saw three rigs added, but even so, the entirety of the state of Texas was still down by 8 rigs to 173 rigs this week, and down from 373 rigs a year ago...since rig reductions in the Eagle Ford of south Texas and the Barnett Shale of the Dallas-Ft Worth area only account for part of that, it's be a fair guess that the most of the conventional vertical oil rigs that were pulled out this week probably came from that state...also note that the first table above only includes the major producing states, and hence the retirement of the single rig that had been operating in Alabama was missed by this overview...a year ago, there were 2 rigs deployed in Alabama...
Saturday, May 21, 2016
The main reason for me not coming back to Korea next year will be if/when Shillary becomes POTUS.
Her uber Neocon foreign policy will take us to the brink.
She is a clear amd present danger not only to the Korean peninsula, but all of Asia and the rest of the world.
Sanctions, more and harsher sanctions?
Let us not forget the sanctions that Billary imposed on Iraq.
Thousands and thousands of innocent Iraqi children died because of those sanctions. His Sec of State (one of Shillary's foreign policy advisors) Madeline Albright said it was all worth it.
Criminal and insane, yet they want to lead America AGAIN.
She is a Neocon dressed in a Neoliberal pants suit.
Her idea of American Exceptionalism is what drives her ego.
In her mind she can do no wrong.
The end justifies the means.
Shillary was a complete failure as Sec of State.
Her running on her own foreign policy experience is a joke and a disgrace.
Think Honduras, Libya, Syria, Iraq, on and on.
We do not need another war and fear monger in the White House that answers to the MIC and Wall Street.
Yes I am a proud and screaming far far left liberal.
VIVA SANDERISTAS! ! LOL
Tao Dao Man
Friday, May 20, 2016
Dear Congress,— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) May 20, 2016
Let's get this done.
The vast majority of Americans pic.twitter.com/23ND36tFFm
Thursday, May 19, 2016
Wednesday, May 18, 2016
The Seven Sermons to the Dead Septem Sermones ad Mortuos by Carl Gustav Jung, 1916 (Translation by H. G. Baynes)
Hard to know is the deity of Abraxas. Its power is the greatest, because man perceiveth it not. From the sun he draweth the summum bonum; from the devil the infimum malum; but from Abraxas life, altogether indefinite, the mother of good and evil.
Smaller and weaker life seemeth to be than the summum bonum;wherefore is it also hard to conceive that Abraxas transcendeth even the sun in power, who is himself the radiant source of all the force of life.
Abraxas is the sun, and at the same time the eternally sucking gorge of the void, the belittling and dismembering devil.
The power of Abraxas is twofold; but ye see it not, because for your eyes the warring opposites of this power are extinguished.
What the god-sun speaketh is life.
What the devil speaketh is death.
But Abraxas speaketh that hallowed and accursed word which is life and death at the same time.
Abraxas begetteth truth and lying, good and evil, light and darkness, in the same word and in the same act. Wherefore is Abraxas terrible.
Tuesday, May 17, 2016
Noam Chomsky: The True 'Center of Radical Islamic Extremism' Is Close American Ally Saudi Arabia @alternet
Noam Chomsky: The True 'Center of Radical Islamic Extremism' Is Close American Ally Saudi Arabia @alternet: As Saudi Arabia continues to fund fighting in Syria and Yemen, Noam Chomsky says it is 'the center of radical Islamic extremism.'
Chinese nationals bought more than $110 billion worth of both residential and commercial real estate over the past five years. Last year’s surge in purchases moved them past Canadians, to become the largest group of foreign buyers of US homes, according to a study from the Asia Society and Rosen Consulting Group.