Rise in Delta variant cases sends global stocks lower
Indices around the globe traded lower to start the week, as markets reacted to the news that cases of the Delta variant of COVID-19 were rapidly rising.
One of the biggest movers was the Dow Jones, which dropped by as much as 850 points Monday, which is its biggest intraday decline since late January.
COVID-19 cases have risen to an average of over 30,000 infections in recent days, despite over 70% of the population receiving at least one jab of the vaccine.
As of writing, the Dow was trading 2.65% lower.
FTSE 100 falls despite start of UK “Freedom Day”
Monday was hailed as “Freedom Day” in the United Kingdom, as all remaining COVID-19 restrictions were officially lifted.
Brits are now able to return to nightclubs, and other venues, with no restrictions on capacity, while face masks are no longer mandatory.
Although the restrictions have been lifted, Prime Minister Boris Johnson urged people to remain cautious, as cases of COVID-19 once again soar.
The PM stated that, “This is the right moment, but we’ve got to do it cautiously. We’ve got to remember that this virus is sadly still out there”.
Cases have risen to over 50,000 per day in the UK, as the Delta variant of the virus spreads, as more and more Brits began to socialise in recent weeks.
London’s FTSE 100 closed 2.34% lower today.
Oil prices tumble as OPEC+ increase output
Almost 3-weeks after OPEC and its allies held their monthly meeting, which was then cancelled, the cartel today confirmed that output levels have been agreed upon.
OPEC+ which includes Russia agreed to increase supply by 2 million barrels per day, from August to December 2021.
After cutting output by as much as 10 million bpd during the peak of the pandemic, the cartel gradually increased supply as demand for energies picked up in 2021.
Despite this, production is still around 5.8 million bpd lower, than it was pre-pandemic.
WTI crude fell to an intraday low of $66.19 on the news, which is its lowest level since May.
Quote of the day -“I know where I’m getting out before I get in.”– Bruce Kovner