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This Week’s Market Buzz

•    In the U.S. Energy Information Administration’s (EIA) January Short-Term Energy Outlook, EIA forecasts that the Brent crude oil spot price will average $65 per barrel (b) in 2020 and $68/b in 2021; and that the West Texas Intermediate (WTI) spot price will average $59/b in 2020 and $62/b in 2021. EIA expects that crude oil prices will remain elevated in the first few months of 2020, reflecting a price premium on crude oil from recent geopolitical events. However, this price premium will diminish in the first half of 2020, and market fundamentals will drive the crude oil price forecast in the second half of 2020 and in 2021.

•    U.S. Silica Holdings Inc. announced the promotion of Brad Casper to the role of president as part of the company's long-term succession planning, with Bryan Shinn continuing as U.S. Silica's chief executive officer and a member of the board of directors.

•    California increased its efforts to keep the federal government from allowing oil and gas drilling on more than 1 million acres of public land, suing to block the Trump administration from issuing new permits in the central part of the state. The lawsuit against the U.S. Bureau of Land Management follows a new state law also intended to counter Trump administration plans to increase oil and gas production on protected public land.