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S&P/ASX 200 slips as investors fear a COVID-19 resurgence

Brent crude gained 0.6% to US$69.00 a barrel on Tuesday after slumping around 7% in the previous session.

Polymetals Resources Ltd - S&P/ASX 200
Dow Jones index in the US tumbled 700 points on Monday for its worst drop since October.

S&P/ASX 200 (INDEXASX:XJO) has slipped for a second day, with the index easing by 0.12% to 7,277 points by about 1.15 pm.

This follows a significant 1.6% tumble for the S&P500 overnight on Wall Street as the spread of the COVID-19 Delta strain and lockdown uncertainty continues to keep markets on edge.

Oil price tumbles

Locally, energy stocks were the hardest hit following ~7.5% in oil prices overnight as COVID-19 infections surged and OPEC+ agreed to gradually ramp up oil production through to September 2022.

Oil Search (ASX:SOH) was an exception, rising by ~4.5% on news that Santos (ASX:STO) has launched an ~$8.8 billion proposal to merge with the PNG focused energy stock.

Santos’s ~$4.25 per share offer for Oil Search is ~16% above its closing price on Monday.

COVID-19

Australia’s COVID-19 worries remain with Victoria’s five-day lockdown extended for a further seven days.

Greater Sydney is now in week four of lockdowns with NSW identifying 78 cases over the past day.

South Australia will begin a lockdown from 6 pm tonight.

Top gainers

Today’s top gainers on the ASX include Polymetals Resources Ltd (ASX:POL) (+3.33%), Antipa Minerals Ltd (ASX:AZY) (+6.38%), Oklo Resources Ltd (ASX:OKU) (+4.00%), Skyfii Ltd (ASX:SKF) (+4.35%) and West Wits Mining Limited (ASX:WWI) (+11.25%).

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