Euro hits 20-year low as Russian pipeline shuts down


Financial markets are rocked by the closing of Russia’s Nord Stream 1 pipeline, as energy pressures on European economies increase as winter approaches.

The euro fell to a two-decade low in early trading Monday morning after the Russian energy giant Gazprom extended the shutdown of its gas pipeline to Germany on September 2, The Guardian reported.

Fears of skyrocketing energy prices and potential shortages pushed the euro further below parity against the US dollar, causing the single currency to fall to $0.9879 against the US dollar for the first time in two decades.

Nord Stream 1 was due to restart Saturday morning, after a three-day shutdown for maintenance.

But Gazprom crushed hopes of a resumption the previous day, blaming a leak.

Analysts predict gas prices will rise after falling from recent highs last week, The Guardian reported.

Michael Hewson of CMC Markets said: “Russia’s moves on Friday to close the pipeline indefinitely could lead to renewed upward pressure on European and UK natural gas prices as markets reopen today, following large price falls last week as UK natural gas prices plunged 39. percent, while European prices fell 33 percent.”

European stock markets are heading for significant losses at the opening, with the German DAX trading 2-3 percent lower on the futures market, The Guardian reported.


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