Stock markets once again sunk deep into the red after a renewed slump in the price of oil saw investors head for the exit.
Heavy falls overnight in Asia set the scene for another painful session for equities after the cost of Brent crude again fell back below 30 US dollars a barrel, with Friday’s 10% rebound proving short-lived.
The FTSE 100 Index dropped by 1.6%, down 96.2 points to 5780.8, with European markets mirroring the sell-off in Asia, where China’s benchmark Shanghai Composite dropped 2.7% to its lowest close in over a year.
Blue chip oil stocks were the hardest hit in London, with Royal Dutch Shell and BP both shedding 3%, down 48p to 1354p and 9.5p to 340.7p respectively.
Banking and insurance stocks were also suffering, with Prudential 33.8p lower at 1266.8p and Barclays sinking 4.7p to 177.2p.
Electrical retailer Dixons Carphone was also in sharp focus as it unveiled plans to roll out electrical superstores merging its three main brands across the UK and Ireland and updated on a “strong” festive sales performance.
The group is to shut 134 stores as it extends the so-called three-in-one store format across its estate, combining PC World, Currys and Carphone Warehouse under one roof.
It also edged its full-year profits outlook higher after seeing like-for-like sales rise 5% over the 10 weeks to January 9.
But shares failed to benefit amid the wider market falls, down 6.2p to 460.9p.