Dubai: Dubai index tumbled more than 3 per cent as crude  continued with its southward journey.

The Dubai Financial Market (DFM) General index fell  3.27 per cent to be at 3,707.87, after hitting a low of 3,7.10.27.

Oil prices slid to a fresh six and a half year low in Asia Thursday, approaching the key $40 a barrel level after a surprise rise in US inventories added to concerns of a supply glut.

US benchmark West Texas Intermediate (WTI) for delivery in September, which expires Thursday, dipped 21 cents to $40.59 in afternoon trade after falling sharply in New York to its lowest level since March 2009. Brent crude for October dropped 28 cents to $46.88 a barrel.

Asian shares

Shares fell in Asia on Thursday, taking cues from Wall Street's overnight losses after the Federal Reserve signaled it was open to the possibility of an interest rate hike in September.

Energy stocks fell as the price of oil plummeted.

Japan's Nikkei 225 stock index lost 0.6 percent to 20,100.14 while Hong Kong's Hang Seng slipped 1.4 percent to 22,839.07.

South Korea's Kospi shed 0.9 percent to 1,922.43 and the Shanghai Composite Index was down 0.4 percent at 3,779.10. Australia's S&P ASX/200 also dropped, losing 1.4 percent to 5,305.30. Shares also fell in Southeast Asia.