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    Oil stocks decline up to 9% after historic crash in US crude spooks investors

    Oil stocks decline up to 9% after historic crash in US crude spooks investors

    Oil stocks decline up to 9% after historic crash in US crude spooks investors
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    By Pranati Deva   IST (Updated)

    Shares of energy companies ONGC and GAIL shed up to 9 percent on Tuesday after the historic crash in the US crude oil spooked investors.
    The price of a barrel of benchmark US oil plunged over 300 percent to settle at -$37.63, a troubling sign of an unprecedented global energy glut as the coronavirus pandemic affected economic activity. However, it later rebounded on Tuesday, with the US crude turning positive.
    ONGC shares fell as much as 8.6 percent to its intra-day low of Rs 67.6 per share on the BSE, while Reliance Industries lost 4.3 percent to Rs 1,190 per share. GAIL also lost over 4 percent in early trade.
    The Nifty Energy index was down over 3 percent as compared to a 2.4 percent fall in Nifty50.
    Meanwhile, OMCs also declined with BPCL, HPCL, and IOC down between 2 percent and 4 percent.
    Oil prices have crashed as travel restrictions and lockdowns to contain the spread of the coronavirus curbed global fuel use, with demand down 30 percent worldwide. That has resulted in growing crude stockpiles with storage space becoming harder to find.
    The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and its allies including Russia, a grouping known as OPEC+, recently agreed to cut output by 9.7 million barrels per day (bpd).
    OPEC last week said that the world market for crude is undergoing an unprecedented shock due to coronavirus mitigation measures that have decimated demand. "The oil market is currently undergoing a historic shock that is abrupt, extreme and at global scale," said the group of producer nations in its latest monthly report.
    Meanwhile, Donald Trump said that the United States would take advantage of the historic drop in oil prices to replenish its national strategic stockpile, pending approval by Congress. "We are filling up our national petroleum reserves... You know, the strategic reserves," Trump told reporters at his daily coronavirus press conference. "And we are looking to put as much as 75 million barrels into the reserves themselves," he added.
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