Stocks are having their worst December since 1931

Stocks are having their worst December since 1931

The broad-based S&P dropped 1.5 per cent to 2,506.87, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index sank 2.2 per cent to 6,635.48.

The indexes, which have had their worst early December since 1980, are now down more than nine percent for the year.

The Russell 2000 index of smaller companies sagged 23.23 points, or 1.7 percent, to 1,326.

The technology-focused Nasdaq index closed in bear market territory at the end of its worst week since November 2008 as the S&P 500 suffered its sharpest weekly fall since August 2011.

At 2:15 p.m. Eastern time, the S&P 500 index was down 49 points to 2,456, its lowest since August 2017. Broad stock markets in the United States and Europe are on pace for the worst quarter since 2008, while the Dow finished its worst week since late 2008.

The defensive consumer staples, utilities and real estate sectors logged gains of 0.1 percent to 0.77 percent, while all the other eight S&P sectors declined.

The Nasdaq is down 382.26 points, or 5.5 percent.

He said speculation that the USA economy could be headed for a recession has picked up, dampening global sentiment.




The initial tick upward came as Federal Reserve Bank of New York President John Williams said that the central bank could reassess its interest rate policy and balance sheet reduction in the new year if the economy slows.

Wren said investors felt Fed Chairman Jerome Powell came off as unconcerned about the state of the USA economy and fears that the economy could not just slow down, as expected, but go into a recession in 2019 or 2020.

"We see slowing economic and earnings growth and a carousel of concerns", said Keith Lerner, chief market strategist at SunTrust, in a note to investors Friday.

U.S. stocks closed lower on Friday as investors digested the latest economic data, speech from a central bank official, and the fact that the government is on the verge of a partial shutdown.

Oil prices continued to retreat. Benchmark U.S. crude fell 4.5 percent to $46.02 a barrel in NY. The Dow Jones Small-Cap Growth TSM Index closed at 8235.47 for a loss of -161.60 points or -1.92%. The bond-buying has the effect of sending long-term bond yields lower, which reduces interest rates on mortgages and other kinds of long-term loans.

The Dow lost 464 points, or 2 percent, to 22,859.

As recently as October, yields had been at a seven-year high of 3.261 percent.

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