Stock Market Plunges Nearly 900 Points Over Coronavirus Fears

Screengrab / Google

Darren.Woon

The stock market continues downwards as a possible domestic coronavirus outbreak grows increasingly likely.

Growing fears of the spreading coronavirus caused stocks to continue downwards as diving bond yields raised more concern that the global economy is slowing significantly, according to CNBC

The Dow dropped 900 points, or 3.3%, hitting session lows after health officials reported new warnings about the possibility of a greater coronavirus spread in the U.S.. The S&P 500 fell 3.2% while the Nasdaq Composite decreased 2.9%.

The declines put the Dow and S&P 500 more than 7% below the record highs reached earlier this month. The Nasdaq is trading 8.2% below its all-time high from Feb. 19. 

“I understand the inclination to buy on the dip. I understand that the path of least resistance in this market is to bounce up...but I stress, this is different,” Mohamed El-Erian, chief economic advisor at Allianz and former Pimco CEO, told CNBC. 

U.S. equities dropped when the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention briefed the U.S. on how to prepare if the coronavirus outbreak worsens domestically. 

“We are asking the American public to work with us to prepare in the expectation that this could be bad,” said Dr. Nancy Messonnier, a top official at CDC.

“We increasingly find it hard to believe that USA cases are as low as reported, and believe that given the flow of Chinese, Korean, and Iranian nationals into North America, a large USA community-based outbreak is increasingly likely,” wrote Simon Powell, equity strategist with Jefferies. “If not managed correctly, this could significantly rattle markets.”

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