Crude oil futures slid during the mid-morning trade in Asia Dec. 22, as concerns over a new strain of the coronavirus remained entrenched in the market. At 11:12 am Singapore time (0312 GMT), the ICE Brent February contract fell 16 cents/b (0.31%) from the Dec. 21 settle to $50.75/b, while the February NYMEX light sweet crude contract was down 18 cents/b (0.38%) at $47.79/b. Both markers had fallen 2.58% to settle at $50.91/b and $47.91/b, respectively, on Dec. 21. The downward trajectory of the prices this morning can be attributed to the market’s fear that the emergence of a mutant strain of the coronavirus in the UK could spread to the rest of the world rapidly and lead to tougher and longer lockdown measures. The mutant strain, called B.1.1.7, is reportedly 70% more […]