The U.S. financial markets fell sharply on Thursday for the sixth consecutive session, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average plummeting as fear of the deadly coronavirus grows. At 11 a.m. ET, the Dow was down 478 points, and it then dropped 1,000 points right before the closing bell. The steep losses put the Dow in correction territory, meaning it would be down 10 percent from its 52-week high. The S&P 500 is at trading levels not seen since October and the Nasdaq also plunged at the opening bell, falling by 2.7 percent—making this the worst week for Wall Street since the 2008 financial crisis.
Analysts say the plunge is due to fears over reports of the first U.S. community transmission of coronavirus, meaning the patient had not traveled to virus-infected areas. Some U.S. companies stated Thursday they could lose as much as half their annual revenue from China if the epidemic continues into the summer. “We have to brace ourselves for wave after wave of earnings downgrades,” Paul O’Connor, head of multi-asset funds at Janus Henderson Investors, told The Wall Street Journal. “The globalization of the virus extinguishes confidence in the V-shaped recovery that was the view last week.”