London: Oil prices fell heavily on Monday in line with stock markets on renewed concerns for the global economy, traders said.
New York’s main futures contract, light sweet crude for delivery in May, dropped $1.95 to $50.43 a barrel.
Brent North Sea crude for May shed $1.74 to $50.24 a barrel.
“The market is probably a little concerned about the short-term performance of the equity markets,” said Mark Pervan, senior commodities analyst of ANZ bank.
European and Asian stock markets dived on Monday as fresh woes for the global auto sector and extremely weak economic data triggered a rush to dump shares.
Tokyo closed down 4.53% as bad industrial and auto production data fed the gloomy economic outlook and traders rushed to lock in profits made last week, they added. European indices fell between 2 and around 3% in morning trade.
Meanwhile oil prices at about $50 a barrel will not support huge investments needed in the sector to meet demand, the secretary-general of the International Energy Forum, Noe van Hulst, said on Monday, addressing the opening of a two-day forum on cooperation between national and international oil companies in Kuwait.
“Around $12 trillion of investments are needed in the oil and gas sector by 2030, or nearly $500 billion per annum, to maintain market balance,” Hulst of the Riyadh-based IEF said.
He warned that a delay in investments and projects, which is already taking place, will affect future energy supplies and he called for the maintaining of investment plans, as much as possible, to avoid a “boom-bust cycle.”