The U.S. government is considering taking equity stakes in U.S. energy companies as it seeks to help the nation’s oil and gas sector amid the coronavirus outbreak, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said on Friday.
President Donald Trump, speaking at a White House event with Mnuchin, said he wants to help industry and suggested the federal government could buy fuel for the country in advance as well as purchase airline tickets in advance, Reuters reports.
– We’re looking at a whole bunch of alternatives. You can assume that’s one of the alternatives, but there’s many of them – Mnuchin said, referring to possible equity stakes.
The oil sector has been hit hard by a dramatic drop in demand as the coronavirus has effectively shut down economies around the globe, Reuters writes.
Trump encouraged Mnuchin to look at buying oil for later use.
– The United States is the largest user of oil. We could buy oil at a great price into the future. That gives them the infusion they need, and we have oil at a great price into the future – Trump said.