U.S. oil prices fell below $32 a barrel Monday morning, the first time crude has hit that level since 2003 on worries about a deepening slowdown in China, the world’s second-largest economy.
Oil dropped from $33.18 around 8 a.m. ET to $31.73 (U.S.) shortly before noon, taking stock values of energy companies with it. In Toronto, the S&P composite index was down 108.88 points to 12,336.57.
Canada’s main index lost 4.3 per cent of its value last week, and is down more than 20 per cent from an all-time high set in September 2014 – signalling a bear market.
Major European equity indexes had begun the day on the plus side but turned negative. London’s FTSE 100 and Paris CAC 40 were slightly lower and Germany’s DAX was up a bit. Asian markets closed mostly lower before North America trading began, with China’s Shanghai suffering another major decline, falling about 5.3 per cent.
The Canadian dollar was at 70.39 cents US, down almost a third of a cent from Friday’s close.Click here to view data »