Dow Jones has worst week since 2008 financial crisis

Traders work on the the floor of the New York Stock Exchange at the opening bell Friday. The market continued to plunge on fears of the coronavirus and its impact on the economy. Photo by John Angelillo/UPI

Feb. 28 (UPI) — The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed down 350 points Friday, capping a a week of losses over fears of a growing COVID-19 outbreak.

The Dow dropped more than 1 percent Friday and more than 12 percent for the week — its worst week since the financial crisis of 2008. It had some gains later in the day to recover from what was at one point a 1,000-point loss on the day.

The S&P 500 lost 11.5 percent this week. The Nasdaq Composite closed flat Friday after a 3.5 percent drop earlier in the day.

Among the hardest hit stocks for the day were airlines and casinos, including American Airlines (7.5 percent drop), United Airlines (5.2 percent drop), Wynn Resorts (2.9 percent drop) and MGM resorts (3.7 percent drop).

The slide continued amid fears that the coronavirus epidemic would negatively affect the global economy.

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The sell-off continued a large drop Thursday when the Dow plunged by nearly 1,200 points in its biggest one-day point drop in history.

Investors continued piling into safe haven investments such as the U.S. Treasury bonds as the benchmark 10-year bond reached a new all-time low yield of 1.17 percent, down 9.5 percent.

Analysts said the sell-off has been so steep because the novel coronavirus’ negative hit came without much warning at a time when the market was at record highs.

“The timing of this [coronavirus outbreak] was just the worst with respect to investor sentiment being elevated,” Leuthold Group chief investment officer Doug Ramsey told CNBC. “I’m not sure that the market has really priced in the potential economic impact of this.”

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