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Dow Falls 1,191 Points — The Most In History

Traders work through the closing minutes of trading Tuesday on the New York Stock Exchange floor on February 25, 2020 in New York City. Fueled by deepening concerns of the Coronavirus becoming a global pandemic, the stock market plunged Tuesday, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average losing almost 900 points. (Photo by Scott Heins/Getty Images)

(CNN) — US stocks again sold off sharply on Thursday as worries about coronavirus mounted. The S&P 500 posted its worst day since August 18, 2011, and the three main indexes fell into correction territory. Stocks are on track for their worst week since the financial crisis.

The Dow dropped 1,191 points, or 4.4% in its worst one-day point drop in history. The index has fallen more than 10% below its most-recent peak, putting it in correction.

The S&P 500 closed down 4.4% and finished the day below the 3,000 point mark. The index is also in correction territory.

The Nasdaq Composite ended down 4.6%, more than 10% below its latest peak.

All three indexes are on track for their worst week since the fall of 2008, the midst of the financial crisis.

In the United Kingdom, the FTSE 100 also fell into correction territory Thursday. This is the market’s first correction since December 2018.

Stocks still aren’t all that close to a bear market, which is defined as 20% or more below the most recent peak. The S&P 500 is 12% below its peak.

Global equities have been selling off around the world all week as investors fret about the spread of the virus. In the United States, stocks spent all of Thursday in the red, despite a short-lived rebound around midday during which the S&P and the Nasdaq briefly emerged from correction.

“The game has changed with the Italy and also with the new case in California,” said Keith Buchanan, portfolio manager at GLOBALT Investments, in reference to the latest coronavirus cases.

That said, investors would do well to remember that a “10% pullback after the kind of run US equities have been having is not the worst scenario,” Buchanan said.

Still, safe haven investments like bonds are up on Thursday and the 10-year US Treasury yield fell to a new all-time below 1.28%. Bond yields and prices move in opposition to each other.

In the energy space, US oil prices fell yet again as investors worries about a drop in demand. US oil futures settled down 3.4% at $47.09 a barrel.

Worries about the coronavirus outbreak mounted this week, with the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention saying it expects cases in the United States to rise. The virus has now infected more than 82,000 people worldwide, with the vast majority of cases in China.

Corporations continue to warn that they won’t meet their first quarter earnings targets. Microsoft announced that late Wednesday. Goldman Sachs said in a report Thursday that it now thinks US companies will generate zero earnings in 2020.

“What’s even more disconcerting is that the news headlines haven’t been all that bad yet,” said Paul Hickey of Bespoke Investment Group. “Right now, it’s the fear of what could happen that’s driving the markets rather than what is actually happening.”

Indeed, the US economy is thought to be relatively more resilient against the effects of the virus as it is not as reliant on trade as its peers. The second reading of fourth quarter GDP left growth unchanged at 2.1%.


Coronavirus Resources

Have you or a family member been affected by coronavirus issues in Utah? KSL wants to hear from you. Contact KSL by emailing social@ksl.com.

What is COVID-19? Here’s What You Need To Know To Stay Healthy: ksltv.com/432037/what-is-covid-19/

Latest coronavirus stories from KSL can be found at ksltv.com/coronavirus/.

Where in the world has the coronavirus already appeared? See the map: ksltv.com/?p=432035

Your Life Your Health: How can parents prepare their home, children against coronavirus: ksltv.com/?p=432060

Latest information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) about the public response to the coronavirus disease outbreak.

The Intermountain Healthcare GermWatch gives you the latest information on disease activity of all kinds going around in Utah.

How do I prevent it?

The CDC has some simple recommendations, most of which are the same for preventing other respiratory illnesses or the flu:

  • Avoid close contact with people who may be sick
  • Avoid touching your face
  • Stay home when you are sick
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue and then throw the tissue in the trash
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom, before eating, and after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing. Always wash your hands with soap and water if your hands are visibly dirty.
  • If soap and water is not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.

The CDC does not recommend wearing a facemask respirator to protect yourself from coronavirus unless a healthcare professional recommends it.

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