Brent crude crashes to 21-year, as oil market flounders
Brent crude - the international oil price benchmark - crashed to a 21-year low on Wednesday as coronavirus lockdowns hit demand and a glut in oil pushes prices lower.
The price of Brent crude plummeted under $16 a barrel on Wednesday, its lowest price since 1999.
Although it picked up to $20.88 a barrel later in the day it marks an unprecedented loss in value for Brent crude as the US market is also hit hard by oversupply.
The West Texas Intermediate (WTI) fell to a historic low of -$40 a barrel on Monday, with producers technically paying buyers to take oil off their hands.
The US oil storage facilities are at full capacity while producers have continued to pump out oil. Saudi Arabia and the UAE flooded the market with oil earlier this year, following a price war with Russia.
Meanwhile, lockdowns for around half the world's population has seen demand for oil severely diminish.
Experts believe the low Brent prices - which are still above US oil levels - could indicate storage problems in the market and could possibly even go into the zero dollars mark.
"If global storage is running out – and that is what the Brent trade is starting to suggest – then there will be no bid and prices could hit zero," Neil Wilson, chief market analyst at Markets.com told The Independent.