Tag: Chill

With business down more than a third, restaurants dreading winter chill

Phil Roberts knows better than most that looks can be deceiving.

Outdoor dining, federal bailout money and takeout service have allowed him to keep the doors open at Salut, Manny’s Steakhouse, Good Earth and other Twin Cities-area restaurants he and his partners own.

But profits? Forget about it.

“It’s carnage out there,” Roberts said. “People think that if restaurants are doing takeout that things are fine. But we’re not.”

And things are likely to get worse.

Outdoor dining, which allowed many restaurants to limp through an otherwise dreary summer, will soon end. State-mandated capacity restrictions at bars and restaurants remain in place, and luring customers indoors while a pandemic continues to rage across the state could be a tall order.

Help, in the form of more aid from Washington, appears unlikely to arrive soon.

About 100,000 restaurants have shut down since March, according to the National Restaurant Association, an industry

Read More

Oil Prices Face a Chill Autumn Wind

After a strong initial rebound from the depths of the pandemic-induced slump, the comeback in demand slowed dramatically, as I’ve written here and here. This is most obvious in those countries that publish detailed data at high frequency, such as the U.S., the U.K. and some other European nations.

That oil demand in India remains muted is particularly bad news for those wishing oil prices higher. Before Covid-19 struck, it had joined China as one of the major centers of growth in liquid fuel consumption. Sales of transport fuels by the country’s three biggest fuel retailers — Indian Oil Corp., Bharat Petroleum Corp. and Hindustan Petroleum Corp. — were still down year-on-year by more than 20% in July and August.

The one potential bright spot is China, which may yet prove a lifeline for the flagging demand. July’s apparent oil use in the world’s biggest importer was up by a

Read More