Senior Market Analyst, Commodities and Energy
John's Feed
Dec 18, 2013

Obama could lift U.S. oil-export ban without Congress: Kemp

LONDON, Dec 18 (Reuters) – President Barack Obama has
sufficient authority to lift the ban on U.S. oil exports on his
own and does not need approval from Congress.

The various statutes on which the ban is based have either
expired or give the president broad discretion.

Dec 17, 2013

Stigmatisation campaign aims to put coal beyond use: Kemp

LONDON, Dec 17 (Reuters) – “There is no denying the
controversial reality of coal,” Maria van der Hoeven, head of
the International Energy Agency (IEA), wrote in its annual
report on the coal industry, published on Monday.

“No fuel draws the same ire,” she noted. “And yet no fuel is
as responsible for powering the economic growth that has pulled
billions out of poverty in the past decades.”

Dec 13, 2013

Need to dry damp corn sends U.S. propane prices climbing: Kemp

LONDON, Dec 13 (Reuters) – Propane has been the
best-performing part of the barrel this autumn thanks to a
record-busting but damp corn harvest across the Midwest United
States, which has sent demand from crop driers soaring.

In response, U.S. propane prices have firmed, which should
eventually slow the rate of exports and rebuild stocks at home.
Price increases have started to ripple out worldwide.

Dec 11, 2013

Lending controls will test Bank of England’s resolve: Kemp

LONDON, Dec 11 (Reuters) – No bank ever made a loan it did
not believe would be repaid.

But as the economic and financial cycle matures, lending
standards tend to decline. Borrowers stretch themselves, and
banks interpret standards more flexibly to accommodate them.

Dec 11, 2013

BoE’s Carney is more Canute than Scrooge: Kemp

LONDON, Dec 11 (Reuters) – Speaking to the Economic Club of
New York on Monday about Britain’s economic recovery, Bank of
England Governor Mark Carney drew inspiration from Charles
Dickens’ nineteenth-century parable about miserliness contained
in his celebrated novel “A Christmas Carol”.

But perhaps the governor should consult a much older work,
Henry of Huntingdon’s twelfth-century “History of the English
People”, which relates the story of King Canute unsuccessfully
attempting to hold back the tide.

Dec 9, 2013

Leave critical minerals to the market: Kemp

LONDON, Dec 9 (Reuters) – The Critical Minerals Policy Act
of 2013, backed by a bipartisan group of 18 senators, is one of
those pieces of special-interest legislation that deserves to
die in the U.S. Congress.

The bill (S 1600), pending before the Senate Committee on
Energy and Natural Resources, directs the secretary of the
interior to designate a list of up to 20 “critical minerals”
based on the risk of potential supply restrictions and their
importance to the economy.

Dec 6, 2013

Commodity traders face consolidation: Kemp

LONDON, Dec 6 (Reuters) – Deutsche Bank’s decision to quit
trading in most commodity markets is another sign of the excess
capacity across the commodity-trading sector and likely
foreshadows further consolidation over the next two to three

Deutsche, rated one of the top five commodity
banks globally, will cease trading in energy, agriculture, base
metals, coal and iron ore, while retaining its precious metals
business and popular index funds.

Dec 5, 2013

U.S. EPA must set realistic emissions limits for coal: Kemp

LONDON, Dec 5 (Reuters) – President Barack Obama has
directed the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to
finalise regulations on the amount of carbon dioxide (CO2)
emitted by existing coal-fired power plants by June 2015, as
part of the White House Climate Action Plan.

The EPA has already published draft regulations that would
limit greenhouse emissions from new coal plants to no more than
1,000 lbs of carbon dioxide per megawatt-hour of electricity
generated (lbs/MWh).

Dec 4, 2013

Coal, the dirty but indispensable fuel: Kemp

LONDON, Dec 4 (Reuters) – Supporters of renewables often
imply the clean-energy revolution is close to phasing out fossil
fuels for electricity generation in the United States,
especially polluting coal-fired power plants.

They point to the wind farms sprouting up in Texas and
across the Great Plains, as well as the giant solar thermal
arrays being commissioned in California, as signs that coal’s
days are numbered.

Dec 2, 2013

Britain’s utility-bill gerrymander: Kemp

LONDON, Dec 2 (Reuters) – Imitation is the sincerest form of
flattery. So the package of measures designed to cut average
British household gas and electricity bills by around 50 pounds
($82) a year, outlined by Conservative and Liberal Democrat
ministers on Sunday, is a compliment to the opposition Labour

Labour had successfully made the rapidly escalating price of
energy a central political issue, part of its focus on the “cost
of living crisis”, and drawn a clear distinction between its
policies, which would halt price rises for 20 months after the
next general election, and those of the ruling Conservative and
Liberal Democrat parties.

    • About John

      "John joined Reuters in 2008 as one of its first financial columnists, specialising in commodities and energy. While his main focus is on oil markets, he has written broadly on the emergence of commodities as an asset class, regulatory issues and macroeconomic themes. Before joining Reuters, John spent seven years as a senior analyst for Sempra Commodities (now part of JP Morgan) covering base metals and crude oil. Previously, he worked as an analyst on world trade, banking and financial regulation for consultancy Oxford Analytica."
    • Follow John