Crude oil futures opened higher on the Multi Commodity Exchange (MCX) on Monday morning on bargain hunting and views over the effect of Omicron variant of the Covid-19 virus being divided.

Many European countries said Omicron cases had been reported in their territory, raising concerns. Reports said South African doctors termed the new variant as a mild one. However, some scientists have said Omicron could spread faster.

On MCX, the December futures of crude oil traded at ₹5,839 against the previous close of ₹5,186, up 3.91 per cent in the initial hour of trading on Monday.

The February Brent oil futures were trading at $74.62 a barrel, up by 4.23 per cent, and the January futures of WTI crude oil were trading at $71.59, up by 5.05 per cent.

Crude oil also gained as OPEC+ decided to shift its meeting from Tuesday to Thursday to analyse the situations following the reported cases of the Omicron variant of Covid virus in some countries and its impact on the demand and supply situation of crude oil.

Some see the rise in crude oil futures as bargain hunting as prices dropped 13 per cent last week. On Monday, Brent crude oil was up three per cent at $75.24 a barrel, while WTI crude gained 4.33 per cent at $70.1.

On MCX, December natural gas futures traded lower at ₹381 against the previous close of ₹405.20, down by 5.97 per cent. The January contracts of US natural gas were trading at $5.08, down by 7.58 per cent.


On the National Commodities and Derivatives Exchange (NCDEX), the December jeera futures were up by 1.77 per cent in the initial hour of Monday morning. The contract was trading at ₹16,085 against the previous close of ₹15,805. It is said that the poor production of jeera in Turkey and Syria may boost export demand from the country. The area under jeeera still lags behind in Gujarat.

On NCDEX, the December futures of soyabean were down by 2.73 per cent in the initial hour of trading on Monday morning, with the contract trading at ₹6,523 against the previous close of ₹6,708. It closed down by 2 per cent on Friday. According to market players, farmers are expecting higher prices for their stock.