HOW COMPANIES ARE PUSHING AHEAD ON CLIMATE-CHANGE TARGETS

Some of the world’s biggest firms are moving ahead with plans to tackle climate change, The Wall Street Journal reports.

Firms including Apple Inc, Wal-Mart Stores Inc. and steelmaker Thyssenkrupp AG are taking steps to reduce their carbon footprints in a bid to cut energy costs, pre-empt regulation or burnish their reputations with investors and customers.

“As world leaders gathered in Bonn, Germany, this week to negotiate enforcement of the 2015 United Nations Paris Agreement on capping climate change, company and bank executives said corporations will be as crucial as governments in making good on the U.N. pact, from which U.S. President Donald Trump has pledged to withdraw,” write Zeke Turner and Sarah Kent.

OIL IS DOWN ON RISING STOCKS BUT INVESTORS HOPE U.S. PRODUCERS SHOW RESTRAINT

Brent crude oil, the global benchmark, was down 0.3% at $61.72 a barrel in London midmorning trading. On the New York Mercantile Exchange, West Texas Intermediate futures were trading down 0.2% at $55.20 a barrel.

The U.S. Energy Information Administration on Wednesday released data showing that crude stockpiles climbed by 1.9 million barrels in the week ended Nov. 10, ahead of analysts’ forecasts.

Still, oil prices have risen more than 20% since the start of September, with Brent holding steady over $60 a barrel for the first time in over two years.

Oil traders and analysts have traced the market’s recovery to signs of tighter supply and a return of geopolitical tensions.

But many are also pointing to rising confidence that U.S. shale producers won’t endlessly ramp up production.

Marathon Oil Corp., for example, told investors this month that it is making plans for next year based on oil prices of about $50. Even if prices rise and the company finds itself with extra cash, quick boosts to output won’t be on the top of the to-do list, the company said.

RUSSIA OFFERS VENEZUELA DEBT RELIEF

Russia threw a lifeline to Venezuela on Wednesday, restructuring the more than $3 billion it is owed by its economically and politically troubled South American ally, write James Marson and Kejal Vyas.

The Russian Finance Ministry said the debt of $3.15 billion would now be repaid over 10 years, with minimal repayments during the first six years.

“The agreement comes just as Venezuela’s cash-strapped government teeters on the edge of a default on some $150 billion in outstanding debt,” the Journal reports.

Venezuela still must face its other creditors. Some analysts said the turmoil may add to pressure on Venezuela’s crude oil production which is already down 20% since 2012.

ANGOLAN GOVERNMENT DISMISSES HEAD OF STATE OIL FIRM

Angola’s President Joao Lourenco has dismissed Isabel dos Santos as the chairwoman of state-oil firm Sonangol, the government said Wednesday, writes Neanda Salvaterra for the Dow Jones Newswires.

Her nomination in mid-2016 came at the behest of her father, former President of Angola Jose Eduardo dos Santos, and was met with criticism and allegations of nepotism.

Ms. dos Santos leaves her position as the head of Sonangol at a time when low oil prices have taken a chunk out of Angola’s revenue and hampered the work of the state-oil firm.