15 March 2011 17:45 [Source: ICIS news]
By Franco Capaldo
LONDON (ICIS)--Oil prices fell steeply on Tuesday while shares in global markets plummeted as ?xml:namespace>
Crude prices fell by more than $5/bbl to take April Brent on ICE Futures below $108/bbl as fresh explosions at the
By 11:50 GMT, April Brent crude had hit a low of $107.88/bbl, a loss of $5.79/bbl from Monday’s close of $113.67/bbl. However, it recovered slightly later in the day to reach $110.82/bbl.
Heightened fears of widespread radiation contamination also caused Japanese shares to plummet, dragging down other bourses in Asia. The Nikkei 225 index fell by as much as 14.5% to 8,227.63 points, before settling at 8,605.15, down 1,015.34 points or 10.55% from Monday’s close, with the Japanese central bank continuing to provide liquidity to calm the markets.
The Shanghai SE Composite index in
The Japanese central bank offered to inject yen (Y) 8,000bn ($98.2bn) into the banking system on Tuesday, following a record Y15,000bn offered in same-day money market operations on Monday, according to media reports.
However, the bank's efforts did little to stop shares continuing to fall in the Western markets. At 16:21 GMT, the FTSE 100 in the UK was down by 1.34% from the previous close, or 77.29 points, to 5,697.95 points, while the DAX index in
In early trading in the
Meanwhile, some Japanese petrochemical companies are pulling staff out of offices and halting production.
Sumitomo Chemical was planning to evacuate its Tokyo-based office staff by Tuesday evening, a source said, while specialty chemical company LANXESS announced that it had temporarily closed its Japanese headquarters in
Japan’s Nippon Nyukazai halted production at its recently started 30,000 tonne/year butyl glycol ether (BGE) plant in Kashima, Ibaraki prefecture, while Asahi Glass Co (AGC) has shut its propylene oxide (PO), monopropylene glycol (MPG) and polyether polyols plants in Kashima.
In addition, JX Nippon Oil & Energy, the world's largest paraxylene (PX) exporter, has declared a force majeure on supply of PX at three of its facilities.
According to media reports, the latest official death toll from the quake and tsunami is more than 3,000, but thousands are still unaccounted for and it is estimated that more than 10,000 have been killed.
Additional reporting by Neha Popat, Pearl Bantillo, Nurluqman Suratman, Felicia Loo, Chow Bee Lin, Saru Thukral, Ong Sheau Ling
($1 = €0.72, $1 = Y81.49)
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