Hammered: Wall Street Drops as China Fears Flare

Date: January 07, 2016
By: Victoria Craig

U.S. equity markets closed a volatile session Thursday in sharply negative territory as fears were

Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange (Reuters)
Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange (Reuters)

re-ignited about slower growth in China, and global currencies. Stocks tracked by the S&P Global Broad Market Index shed $2.3 billion over the last four days, in what has amounted to the worst ever start to a year for the broader averages.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average tumbled 392 points, or 2.32% to 16513. The S&P 500 dropped 47 points, or 2.37% to 1943, while the Nasdaq Composite lost 145 points, or 3.03% to 4689.

All 10 S&P 500 sectors were in negative territory as technology and materials plunged more than 2%.

Fears over China’s growth and currency devaluation ricocheted through global markets on Thursday before regulators stepped in to try and calm frayed nerves. Their efforts, though, were short lived.

In China, the trading day was over just as it began thanks to a swift selloff. For the second time this week, Chinese equity markets tripped their newly-installed “circuit breaker,” a mechanism used to prevent panic selling, just 30 minutes into the start of trade. But regulators there had second thoughts hours after trading was halted, ultimately deciding to suspend the circuit breaker, which has added to volatility so far this year.     [FULL  STORY]