A three-member arbitration panel has started hearing validity of the Government’s demand of $1.55 billion as compensation from Reliance Industries for “unfairly” producing ONGC’s gas. The panel, headed by Singapore-based arbitrator Prof Lawrence Boo, had its first hearing on March 3 where the timetable was drawn, sources privy to the development said.
RIL will first file its statement of claim, followed by a statement of defence by the Government. This will be followed by rejoinders, counter-rejoinders and oral hearing, sources said, adding that the panel plans to wind up the hearing in a year.
The Central Government has named former Supreme Court judge G S Singhvi as its nominee on the three-member arbitration panel while RIL and its partners BP Plc of the UK and Canada’s Niko Resources have named former UK High Court Judge Bernard Eder to the panel.
RIL-BP-Niko had slapped an arbitration notice on November 11 last year.
This was against the oil ministry’s November 3, 2016 notice to RIL, Niko and UK’s BP seeking $1.47 billion for producing about 338.332 million British thermal units of gas in the seven years ended March 31, 2016 that had seeped or migrated from the Oil and Natural Gas Corporation’s (ONGC) blocks into their adjoining KG-D6 in the Bay of Bengal.
Anyone who has been involved in alternative geopolitical and economic analysis for a decent length of time understands that the establishment power structure thrives according to its ability to either exploit natural crises, or to engineer fabricated crises.
This is not that hard to comprehend, but for some reason there are a lot of people out there who simply assume that global sea-change events just happen “at random,” that the elites are stupid or oblivious, and that all outcomes are a matter of random chance rather than being directed or manipulated. I call these people “intellectual idiots,” because they believe they are applying logic to every scenario but they are sabotaged by an inherent bias which causes them to deny the potential for “conspiracy.”
To clarify, their logic folds in on itself and becomes faulty. They believe themselves objective, but they abandon objectivity when they staunchly refuse to consider the possibility of covert influence by organized special interests. When you internally dismiss the possibility of a thing, no amount of evidence will ever convince you of its reality. This is how the “smartest” people in the room can end up being the dumbest people in the room.
Airline passengers traveling from eight Middle Eastern nations, including Jordan and Egypt, will be barred from carrying large electronic devices into the main cabin under new regulations from the Trump administration.
The new rules, which come into effect on Tuesday, also apply to Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, according to a US official. Passengers from the eight countries will have to check laptop computers and other large devices, such as tablets, into the hold on all flights bound for airports in the US. But the restrictions will not apply to flights leaving the US for the same countries, according to the official, who requested anonymity.
The move marks the latest attempt by the Trump administration to tighten security after Mr Trump vowed during the presidential race to do more to tackle terrorism. It comes one week after his administration issued a revised travel ban that temporarily bars citizens of seven largely Muslim countries from entering the US. The revised order, like the first one, has been blocked by the courts, preventing implementation for the time being.
Royal Jordanian Airlines earlier on Monday warned its passengers about the new Department of Homeland Security regulations regarding large electronic devises. But the airline later removed a notice from its social media accounts, following suggestions that it had prematurely released information. While some outlets have reported that the ban applied to 13 countries, the US official said only eight nations were on the actual list.
The S&P index is ending the day down about -0.20% on the day to 2273.50. The high reached 2379.55. The low 2369.66.
The Nasdaq was unchanged at 5901.50. The high reached 5915.12. The low 5888.
The Dow was down about 8.5 points to 20906. The high reached 20955. The low extended to 20885.
In other markets:
2 year yield fell -2.6 bp to 1.288%
5 year yield fell -3.1 bp to 1.986%
10 year yield fell -3.7 bp to 2.462%
Spot gold is up $5 to $1234.39. The high reached 1235.78. The low 1229.15.
WTI Crude oil is trading at $48.21, down -$0.57
The snapshot of the major currencies shows the NZD is the strongest while the GBP is the weakest (PM May will trigger Article 50 on March 29th). The USD was mixed with the dollar gaining against the GBP. It was down against the AUD and NZD and little changed against the other major currencies.
During a week that saw WTI crude prices erase all post-OPEC-production-cut-deal gains, after the Saudis admitted ‘cheating’ (but rapidly back-pedalled), oil speculators added almost 80,000 contracts to their short positions – the 2nd most in 34 years.
This surge in shorts reduced the massive record net long crude positioning by the 2nd most in history – but clearly it remains extremely one-sided still…
Bringing forward expectations of a Fed hike from May-June to March was worth something for the dollar, but to get more now, the market may need to recognize the risk of three (or more) hikes this year. With the strong February jobs growth and a 2.8% year-over-year increase in hourly earnings, rarely does the market’s confidence in an event surpass current expectations for a hike on March 15.
However, the market sees around a one-in-three or a one-in-four chance of a third hike this year.The risks for the updated forecasts from the Federal Reserve seem asymmetrically tilted higher, more rate hikes than fewer by more members. The hawkishness of regional presidents may be underestimated. The data and the global climate are conducive for expediting the normalization process. The hawks will likely feel vindicated by recent developments and may press their case with more vigor.
The focus of the Fed has arguably shifted. Previously, the issue was whether the data would confirm that the economy was evolving toward the Fed’s targets. It did. Rather than focus on the data points per se, officials appear more confident of the direction and resilience of the economy and prices. They now are looking for opportunities, which helps explain the campaign to prepare the market for the March 15 move.
Still, the dollar’s technical tone has deteriorated, and the risk is on the downside over the next several sessions. Our working hypothesis is that the dollar’s recovery that began in early February against most of the majors ended and a correction has begun, For the Dollar Index, this means potential toward 100.75 and possibly 100.40. The former is the 50% retracement of that rally and coincides with the 100-day average (~100.80). The latter is the 61.8% retracement. Alternatively, if the Dollar Index has carved out a double top near 102.25, the neckline is around 101.20 (38.2% of the rally is ~101.10). On a break of the neckline, the measuring objective is 100.
The euro’s pre-weekend rally saw it surpass the 50% retracement objective of its decline from the February 2 high near $1.0830. That retracement was around $1.0660, and the 61.8% retracement is closer to $1.0700. The euro’s five-day moving average crossed above the 20-day average for the first time in a month. The single currency may be tracing out a double bottom at $1.05 The neckline is $1.0630. The measuring objective is around $1.0760.
Weekly inventory and production data from the Department of Energy
Prior was +1501K
Inventories have risen for 9 straight weeks
Gasoline -6555K vs -1987K expected
Distillates -2676K vs -1000K expected
Production +0.6% w/w to 9.088mbpd
The large increase in oil inventories was largely offset by bid draws in gasoline and distillates. If anything, this report is less bullish than the API numbers. It took a moment, but crude jumped about 20-cents on the headlines.
Here’s what API reported late yesterday:
Inventories are nearly 10% higher than they were at this time last year.