Mon, 06 Apr 2020

Global Markets Continue Downward Trajectory Amid Coronavirus Fears

Voice of America
28 Feb 2020, 23:35 GMT+10

Global markets continued their downward trajectory Friday amid fear that are spreading faster than the coronavirus.

COVID-19 has disrupted supply chains, caused the initiation of travel bans and essentially wrecked business and trade around the world.

Analysts are predicting this week will be the worst week since the 2008 global financial crisis.

"These are highly uncertain times, no one really knows the answer and the markets are really panicking," John Lau, SEI Investments Head of Asian Equities told Reuters.

Tokyo and Shanghai slumped Friday by a margin of 3.7%, while Seoul and Sydney also fell by more than 3%. European markets were down 2-3% in early trading.

Fears over the virus and the effects on global trade and manufacturing sent the Dow Jones Industrial Average plummeting Thursday 1,191 points -- the largest single-day drop in history. It marks a 4% single-day decline on the value of the stocks on the list, and a 10% decline in the Dow from its record high set just two weeks ago. Another index, the S&P 500 was off 12% from its all time high, just a week ago.

Technology stocks were down Thursday, with such giants as Apple and Microsoft warning that the virus has affected its supply lines from Asia.

Energy stocks also took a beating in part over a recent drop in oil prices and anticipation that fewer people will travel because of the virus.

No one right now knows exactly where the coronavirus outbreak is heading because health experts are still learning about it.

Merrill Lynch financial adviser Andrew Weltlinger says the coronavirus has "spooked" investors and unnerved a market that was due for a correction.

Weltinger's advice to investors is not to panic, not to sell low, and have a diversified portfolio that includes bonds, which are up this week because people view them as a safer investment when stocks hit a rocky patch.

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