In the last week of April 2020, the US crude oil marker West Texas Intermediate hit a record low of -$37 per barrel for the first time in history. That was a mere four weeks ago! The signs of a lack of storage were clear.
In other words, there’s no place to put all the oil that is being pumped. Hence, the stock-holders are willing to pay more to the purchasers at the moment to take the commodity away, as they have nowhere to hold the oil in storage.
Coming to the impact of such low prices on the trucking industry, there will probably be a momentary reduction in fuel expenses, which can then be used to streamline the operations around customer demands.
The industry will save more as a direct consequence. But there’s always a twist with oil economics. Steep falls in oil prices have knock-on effects on consumer demand. If that happens, there may also be a lesser need for vehicles as less freight will be shipped.
However, one change that is coming is a modified lockdown. Restrictions are being relaxed in many states now and that’s likely to ease the economic demand a bit.