Fred Imbert,Thomas Franck
Futures on the Dow Jones Industrial average, the S&P 500 and Nasdaq-100 all hit the so-called limit down threshold at one point, off by more than 5%, before paring those losses slightly. At last count, the Dow futures were right at that threshold, which halts trading. Dow futures implied a loss of more than 1,100 points at the open. S&P 500 and Nasdaq-100 futures were off by 4.8%.
Exchanges halt trading of futures contracts if they drop by more than 5%, acting as a floor for selling until regular trading resumes at the opening bell at 9:30 a.m. ET. After stocks open in regular trading, the S&P 500 must drop by 7% before triggering the New York Stock Exchange’s circuit breaker, which halts trading temporarily.
Thursday was the second time this week that exchanges were forced to halt futures trading prior to the market open: Futures hit a similar “limit down” prior to the opening of normal trading Monday morning. Later that day, the S&P 500 also hit NYSE’s 7% circuit breaker and the Dow fell more than 2,000 points.
On Wednesday, the Dow ended its historic 11-year bull market run by closing in bear-market territory. A bear market marks a 20% decline from all-time highs. The S&P 500 was just shy of that threshold going into Thursday’s trading and was poised to enter bear market territory based on
Timothy A. Clary | AFP | Getty Imgaes
These moves were not specific enough for investors, however, who
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Also causing concern about how pervasive the virus could already be in this country was the announcement Wednesday that the National Basketball Association is suspending its season after a Utah Jazz player tested positive for
“Consumers sitting at home and not out spending money because they fear catching the
The Dow’s 1,464-point drop on Wednesday was in large part thanks to outsized losses
“These markets have been impossible to predict,” said David Lafferty, chief market strategist at Natixis Investment Managers. “I think of them as kind of
Investors continued to blame the spread and economic impact of the
Italian Premier Giuseppe Conte announced late Wednesday that all the
Wall Street worries that such measures could tip the global economy into recession, especially if Washington decides the disease is rampant enough in the U.S.
—CNBC’s Eustance Huang contributed to this report.