The National Hurricane Center has upgraded the wave to Bertha status:
"THE AREA OF LOW PRESSURE ASSOCIATED WITH A STRONG TROPICAL WAVE NEAR THE CAPE VERDE ISLANDS HAS DEVELOPED INTO TROPICAL DEPRESSION TWO. T.D. TWO IS CENTERED NEAR 12.6N 22.7W...ABOUT 215 NM SSE OF THE CAPE VERDE ISLANDS...AT 03/0900 UTC MOVING WNW AT 8 KT. ESTIMATED MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE IS 1008 MB. MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WIND SPEED IS 30 KT WITH GUSTS TO 40 KT. SEE LATEST NHC FORECAST/ADVISORY UNDER AWIPS/WMO HEADERS MIATCMAT2/WTNT22 KNHC FOR MORE DETAILS. THE DEPRESSION HAS A WELL DEFINED CIRCULATION AND A COMPACT AREA OF PERSISTENT DEEP CONVECTION WITHIN 120 NM OF THE CENTER. FURTHER STRENGTHENING TO A TROPICAL STORM IS FORECAST."
but they don't seem to be too worried from that description of a major issue in the next five days per:
From that page you can navigate to any number of others that provide useful information. If you go to the sattelite pages, for example, and click on the Atlantic loop you'll get a moving image that will suggest what wind coditions, etc. look like.
All, seems that all of the experts think oil is retreating to $100. They don't exactly give the rationale but that level seems to be a popular response. Still think Peter's scenario is most likely. Assuming we do move to $100, anyone want to venture what it would do to the equities? We've already had a fairly big response to a $10 drop. And what about gas, although I don't see how it retreats too much with the current storage levels and hurricane season upon us. Maybe investors are beginning to rotate out of energy. Still feels premature. Cheers. Hare
"HURRICANE BERTHA IS CENTERED NEAR 21.4N 53.3W AT 08/0900 UTC OR ABOUT 585 NM ENE OF THE NORTHERN LEEWARD ISLANDS MOVING NW AT 9 KT. ESTIMATED MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE IS 955 MB. MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WIND SPEED IS 105 KT WITH GUSTS TO 130 KT. SEE LATEST NHC FORECAST/ADVISORY UNDER AWIPS/WMO HEADERS MIATCMAT2/WTNT42 KNHC FOR MORE DETAILS. BERTHA REMAINS A CATEGORY THREE HURRICANE ON THE SAFFIR-SIMPSON HURRICANE SCALE. SOME FLUCTUATIONS IN INTENSITY ARE EXPECTED TODAY WITH A GRADUALLY WEAKENING TREND TO BEGIN WITHIN THE NEXT COUPLE OF DAYS. SCATTERED MODERATE/ ISOLATED STRONG CONVECTION IS WITHIN 60 NM OF THE CENTER OVER THE EAST SEMICIRCLE AND WITHIN 45 NM OF THE CENTER IN THE WEST SEMICIRCLE. SCATTERED MODERATE CONVECTION IS FROM 22N-25N BETWEEN 48W-52W. "
A very powerful hurricane but not one that is thought to be getting more powerful.
The expected path of Bertha is said to be north of the GOM although it is still possible that it could sneak south through the Keys.
"TROPICAL STORM BERTHA CENTERED NEAR 16.6N 37.3W AT 1500 UTC OR ABOUT 770 NM W OF THE CAPE VERDE ISLANDS AND ABOUT 1480 NM E OF THE NORTHERN LEEWARD ISLANDS MOVING W AT 18 KT. ESTIMATED MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE IS 1000 MB. MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WIND SPEED IS 45 KT WITH GUSTS TO 55 KT. SEE LATEST NHC FORECAST/ADVISORY UNDER AWIPS/WMO HEADERS MIATCMAT2/WTNT42 KNHC FOR MORE DETAILS. BERTHA WILL BE ABOUT HALF WAY BETWEEN THE WEST COAST OF AFRICA AND THE LESSER ANTILLES BY TONIGHT OR EARLY SUNDAY. BERTHA IS EXPECTED TO GRADUALLY STRENGTHEN AS UPPER LEVEL ATMOSPHERIC CONDITIONS APPEAR MORE FAVORABLE AND THE SYSTEM MOVES ACROSS INCREASING SEA SURFACE TEMPERATURES. SCATTERED MODERATE TO ISOLATED STRONG CONVECTION IS LOCATED W OF THE CIRCULATION CENTER FROM 15N-20N BETWEEN 36W-40W...WITH ONLY ISOLATED MODERATE CONVECTION FOUND WITHIN 280 NM OF THE CENTER IN THE NE QUADRANT."
Bertha is now a hurricane although it does not pose much risk to the GOM and perhaps not even to the US mainland if NHC's path ideas are correct:
"TROPICAL STORM BERTHA WAS UPGRADED TO HURRICANE AT 07/0900 UTC. HURRICANE BERTHA IS CENTERED NEAR 19.3N 50.2W AT 07/0900 UTC OR ABOUT 730 NM E OF THE NORTHERN LEEWARD ISLANDS MOVING WNW AT 15 KT. ESTIMATED MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE IS 987 MB. MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WIND SPEED IS 65 KT WITH GUSTS TO 80 KT. SEE LATEST NHC FORECAST/ADVISORY UNDER AWIPS/WMO HEADERS MIATCMAT2/WTNT42 KNHC FOR MORE DETAILS. BERTHA HAS DEVELOPED AN EYE ROUGHLY 15-20 NM IN DIAMETER. WHILE A HURRICANE DOES NOT FORM EVERY YEAR IN JULY IN THE ATLANTIC BASIN...IT HAS CERTAINLY HAPPENED BEFORE... INCLUDING IN 1996 WHEN ANOTHER HURRICANE BERTHA FORMED... COINCIDENTALLY ALSO ON JULY 7. DEEP CONVECTION NOW SURROUNDS THE EYE BUT THE LARGEST AREA REMAINS TO THE NW. SCATTERED MODERATE/ ISOLATED STRONG CONVECTION IS WITHIN 75 NM OF LINE FROM 18N51W TO 22N49W. "
Bermuda is presumably already beginning to batten down the hatches: