Boom to bust in the US shale heartlands

FINANCIAL TIMES 🔒| US oil and gas producers entered 2020 under the cosh — out of favour with investors and wilting under heavy debt loads. The Russian and Saudi oil price war was swiftly followed by Covid-19 and the subsequent collapse in global crude demand. Prices plunged, with West Texas Intermediate trading in negative territory for the first time in April. 

Re-ignited tensions between Washington and Beijing have already halted a nascent price rebound and the US oil benchmark is trading below $32 a barrel — barely half its level in early January and well beneath the break-even price needed by many producers.

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