Oil prices tumbled nearly 3% towards a one-week low on Monday as the rapid spread of the coronavirus in several countries outside China left investors fretting about a hit to demand.
Global shares also extended losses as concerns about the impact of the new virus grew, with the number of infections jumping in South Korea, Italy and Iran.
Brent crude fell by $1.69 or 2.9% to $56.81 a barrel by 0158 GMT. U.S. crude futures fell by $1.40 or 2.6% to $51.98.
But as we’ve seen European and U.S. markets react on Friday night and then further news over the weekend about the global spread of the virus, investors now are questioning the assumption about economic growth and that of course is weighing on oil markets.