U.S. crude dips below $20 per barrel

Oil prices fell sharply on Monday, with U.S. crude briefly dropping below $20 and Brent, hitting its lowest level in 18 years, on heightened fears that the global coronavirus shutdown could last months and demand for fuel could decline further.

Brent crude was down $2.09, or 8.4 per cent, after earlier dropping to $22.58, the lowest since November 2002.

U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude fell $1.11, or 5.2 per cent to $20.40.

The price of oil is now so low that it is becoming unprofitable for many oil firms to remain active, analysts said and higher-cost producers will have no choice but to shut production, especially since storage capacities are almost full.

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