Financial Markets Tumbles Again On Recession Fears

Trading in U.S. stock was again suspended almost immediately after the opening on Wednesday, after another huge wave of selling driven by fears of a coronavirus-induced recession.

By 10 AM ET (1400 GMT), the Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 980 points, or 4.6% at 20,257 points, having tried and failed to break through the 20,000 psychological support level at the opening. The S&P 500 was down 3.7% and the Nasdaq Composite was down 2.9%.

The indices had risen by between 5.2% and 6.2% on Tuesday in response to outlines of a $1.2 trillion package of government stimulus measures.

Analysts at Deutsche Bank (DE:DBKGn) said Wednesday they still expected the U.S. economy to contract by annualized 12.9% in the second quarter as the pandemic hits its expected peak.

Newswires reported New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio as calling for military assistance, saying that the number of confirmed cases in the city would top 1,000 by the end of the day. It had stood at 923 on Tuesday.

Globally, the number of confirmed cases has now topped 204,000, with some 6,500 of those in the U.S., according to Johns Hopkins data. The number of deaths globally has risen to 8,241, with the virus still accelerating in the U.S. and much of Europe.

Among individual stocks, Boeing (NYSE:BA) was among the biggest losers, falling 16.4% after the company said it would ask the government for up to $60 billion in support for the aerospace sector.

Boeing has spent $43 billion on share buybacks since 2013, a figure that may put pressure on the government to dilute current shareholders heavily as part of any taxpayer-funded bailout.

Crude oil was also sharply lower as traders priced in an increasingly severe hit to demand for fuel due to lockdown measures. U.S. crude futures fell 9.7% to $24.77 a barrel, their lowest since 2002.



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