Coronavirus company news summary – Second wave of Covid-19 to hit oil demand – Marathon posts lower-than-expected loss in Q3

3 November 2020 (Last Updated November 3rd, 2020 09:44)

3 November

International oil trading companies Vitol and Trafigura have forecast global oil demand to decline further as the US and European region experience a second wave coronavirus cases. The second wave is expected to impact oil demand by between 1.5 million bpd and 1 million bpd in Europe and US respectively. Trafigura projects oil demand to drop to roughly 92 million bpd or less in the coming months, while Vitol estimates oil demand to decline to 96 million bpd.

American refining company Marathon Petroleum registered a smaller loss during the third quarter thanks to increase in fuel prices as Covid-19 pandemic induced restrictions were relaxed. The net loss for the company during the quarter was $1.02bn against a profit of $1.1bn for the corresponding period in 2019. Marathon projects refinery production in Q4 to reach 2.48 million bpd, lower than 2.54 million bpd in Q3.

The ongoing coronavirus pandemic and transition towards renewable energy is expected to have a lasting impact on the oil demand worldwide. The demand for oil is expected to reach 100 million bpd in 2023, before hitting a peak of 102 million bpd in 2028, lower than pre-Covid-19 estimate of 106 million bpd in 2030. The pandemic is expected to drastically bring down demand by 2050 to 62 million bpd.

Oil major Shell has reassured workers at offshore platforms about paying full daily wages even if they are asked to leave work early due to concerns related to the spread of coronavirus infection. Many employees working on platforms are refraining from informing their superiors about Covid-19 related symptoms or coming in contact with workers having Covid-19 symptoms amid retrenchment fears. Shell reported that it is planning to introduce Covid-19 pre-testing for offshore workers to ensure safety at platforms.