Oil falls as investors seek safe havens
SIOUX FALLS, S.D. - Oil prices plunged to their lowest levels in more than a month yesterday as investors, nervous about a week chock-full of corporate earnings reports, sought safer havens in gold and the dollar.
Benchmark crude for May delivery fell $4.45 to settle at $45.88 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.
With trading on the May contract ending today, most of the trading has shifted to the June contract.
Benchmark crude for June delivery dropped $3.96 to settle at $48.51 a barrel.
Phil Flynn, an analyst at Alaron Trading Corp., said the oil markets are reacting to weakness in the stock markets and strength in the dollar.
"This is a market that is totally dependent on these two markets right now for direction," Flynn said.
"We don't move on supply. We don't move on demand. We just move on the dollar.
"And wherever the dollar is or the stock market is, that's where we have a tendency to end up with the oil."