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— This is the script of CNBC's news report for China's CCTV on August 25, Friday.
Worries about tropical storm Harvey heading for America is now becoming a reality. On Thursday U.S. time, the U.S. National Hurricane Center reported stronger winds around Texas and the Mexico Gulf coasts and expecting it to hit category 3 when it comes ashore, making it the strongest hurricane to hit the U.S. since 2005.
Looking at this chart that tracks the wind speed of Hurricane Harvey, it is estimated that the hurricane would hit U.S. on Saturday, 1a.m U.S time, with its wind speech expected to reach 85mph. Subsequently, it will spread to a wider area and possibly by Sunday 1a.m, the wind speed may drop to 45mph.
Other than the economic impact that it will bring about to the local residents, Hurricane Harvey is set to cause disruptions to the U.S energy industry as Texas is the most important oil refinery area in the U.S. Many oil companies have closed and stopped their operations before the arrival of the hurricane.
ExxonMobil, the largest listed oil company in the United States, Anadarko, Colorado's largest oil and gas producer, as well as the Royal Dutch Shell, all announced to stop production of oil and gas drilling rigs on the Gulf of Mexico so as to evacuate their employees.
We all know that the area stretching from Texas to Louisiana makes up one-third of U.S refinery. And just five refineries in Corpus Christi already account for 87 million barrels of oil, which is 4.2% of the U.S. overall market.
The adverse hurricane impact on oil rigs resulted in the demand of oil to dip a short period of time. Overnight, oil prices fell about 2%.
On the other hand, the production of gasoline and other energy products are expected to decline. As a result, overnight, gasoline futures rose more than 3%, reaching the highest point in three weeks.
The U.S energy company's share price declined overnight. Stock prices of Shell, Anadarko, Exxon Mobil and other energy giants also fell too.
Besides, there are worries that Hurricane Harvey will also affect the harvest of local agricultural products. Among them, the US cotton futures rose for the fifth consecutive trading day, on Thursday. The US National Hurricane Center also reported that Hurricane Harvey floods will threaten the lives of local residents, while strong winds may destroy houses, uproot trees, and even cause large-scale power outages. As such, the governor of Texas \ announced that the activation of emergency personnel to rescue the residents. We will continue to keep watch on the latest developments of Hurricane Harvey.
CNBC's Qian Chen reporting from Singapore.