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Saudi Arabia's national oil company appears more intent on continuing to secure refining and petrochemical assets worldwide for its crude oil than on cutting production to stabilize or increase oil prices, observed Jean-Francois Seznec, a Middle East studies adjunct professor at Johns Hopkins University's School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS).

The Obama administration's decision to withdraw and reconsider permits it issued for the proposed Dakota Access crude oil pipeline raises serious questions about the future of building US systems and the livelihoods of the project's construction workers, general presidents of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters and four other labor unions said.

Mexico continues to make significant energy policy reforms. Some of its most important are taking place in its new National Agency for Safety, Energy, and Environment.

US light, sweet crude oil dropped moderately on the New York market Oct. 7 but still settled just below $50/bbl for November delivery while the December contract remained above $50/bbl. The Brent contract for December on the London market settled at just under $52/bbl on Oct. 7.

Royal Dutch Shell PLC’s US division cited depressed prices and lower Bakken crude-oil production as it suspended its request for state permits on Oct. 6 to construct a terminal to receive crude by rail at its Puget Sound refinery at Anacortes, Wash. The Vancouver Energy joint venture submitted an updated application to the state the same day, with several important safety and operating changes, for a similar project farther south.

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