Commodity stocks have taken a hammering after a slump in the oil price dragged the London market into the red.
The FTSE 100 Index was down 75.3 points to 6090.3, as blue-chip mining and oil companies bore the brunt of a 1% slide in the price of Brent crude.
Oil giants Royal Dutch Shell and BP were down 41.5p to 1650.5p and 7.05p to 337.7p respectively, while miner Anglo American saw a rally in the previous session come to an abrupt end, dropping 27.5p to 520p.
Brent crude tumbled 36 cents to 37.3 US dollars a barrel, as it continued to feel the force of last week’s comments by Saudi prince Mohammed bin Salman who poured cold water on the prospect of cutting oil production unless Iran and other major producers follow suit.
In Europe, the Germany’s Dax was down 2.3% and the Cac 40 in France fell 1.8%.
In stocks, top-flight housebuilders rebounded from losses in the previous session to sit among the biggest risers.
Berkeley Group was up 32p to 3233p, Taylor Whimpey lifted 0.2p to 191.1p and Persimmon rose 2p to 2109p.
Meanwhile, supermarket giant Tesco saw its share price drop nearly 2% or 3.6p to 187.4p despite industry data pointing to signs of a recovery in the grocer’s sales.
Britain’s biggest supermarket saw its decline in sales slow for the fourth month in a row, falling to 0.2% in the 12 weeks to March 27, according to market research company Kantar Worldpanel.