Energy Shares Rise Alongside Oil Prices -- Energy Roundup
Shares of oil and gas companies climbed as oil prices rose to their highest level of the year. Crude prices have climbed to four-month highs for the past two sessions, helped largely by U.S. sanctions placed on both Iran and Venezuela that are making it increasingly difficult for those oil-rich countries to export any of their crude. Prices also were supported by data Wednesday from the U.S. Energy Information Administration that showed crude oil stockpiles fell by 3.9 million barrels last week, to stand at 449.1 million barrels. Analysts surveyed by The Wall Street Journal had predicted crude stockpiles would rise by 1.9 million barrels from a week earlier. Prices faced some downward pressure early Thursday after the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries said Thursday in its monthly oil report that its crude output had fallen by 221,000 barrels a day in February from January, to average 30.55 million barrels a day, citing secondary sources. The size of that decline is a sharp drop-off compared with a decrease of 797,000 barrels a day in January, the first month in which a fresh OPEC-led plan to limit production and boost prices took effect. In corporate news, Royal Dutch Shell said it aims to cut its net carbon footprint by up to 3% by 2021, compared with 2016, as it works toward meeting its goal of halving its greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.
-Amy Pessetto, email@example.com