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Oil prices plunge as new Covid variant spooks markets

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Global oil prices have plunged below $80 a barrel after “the most worrying” new variant of Covid-19 was identified in South Africa, raising fears in the market of renewed global travel restrictions that could derail the oil market’s recovery.The price of Brent crude had tumbled by more than $4 (£2.99) a barrel, or 4.9%, to $78.15 a barrel by mid-morning on Friday after countries across Europe and Asia brought in immediate travel restrictions to guard against the spread of the B.1.1.529 variant

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