NEW YORK, April 20 (Xinhua) -- U.S. oil prices plummeted almost 40 percent on Monday to nearly 11 U.S. dollars per barrel, the lowest level since 1998.
As the last settlement day of the May contract, investors rushed to close out their trade positions on Monday, pressing down prices. The June contract was down 11.9 percent at 22.06 dollars.
The havoc COVID-19 pandemic wrecked across the world has translated into plunging oil prices. Traders are also becoming increasingly concerned that oil storage facilities are reaching their limits as stockpiles continue to build owing to the falling demand caused by the surging number of confirmed cases.
Worldwide, stock markets remained mostly lower despite governments trying to inject liquidity into the markets to ease lending so businesses can survive. To save their economies from a further crunch, many governments including Germany and Israel started to loosen lockdowns.
The daily death tally in Italy, Spain, France and Britain have reportedly dropped amid slowing infection rates.
However, analysts say a financial recovery might take longer than initially thought even if the pandemic is soon contained. Enditem