Wall Street traders wrapped the first day of the fiscal year’s second quarter with the Dow 973.65 points in the red and the S&P 500 down by 114.09 points. The Nasdaq composite lost 339.52 points.
The Dow’s fall was largely fueled by shares of Boeing, American Express and United Technologies falling more than 5%, whereas the S&P 500 was pulled away from the green by the real estate, financial and energy sectors.
Although various companies saw their stocks devalued, other organizations could not say the same. CNBC reported that retail company Kroger saw its stocks rise by 4.6% after declaring that its forthcoming revenue and earnings for the previous quarter would exceed expectations. Likewise, fellow retailer Dollar General and telecommunications provider T-Mobile saw stock values increase by 3.9% and 2.5%, respectively.
Elsewhere, Asian markets performed somewhat similarly, as Japan’s Nikkei 225 index, China’s Shanghai Stock Exchange and the Hong Kong Stock Exchange posted hefty losses. Japan led the pack with stock losses of 4.5%. European markets proved no different, as they wrapped the day’s trading over 3% in red territory.
Oil prices, meanwhile, have largely continued their decline, with Brent crude experiencing a 3.80% loss. However, the West Texas Intermediate crude managed to stay in green territory with a 2.64% gain Wednesday.
“There’s still tremendous uncertainty,” Patrick Kaser, portfolio manager at Brandywine Global, told CNBC. “We can look at history as a guidepost for the market and the economy, but there’s not a perfect scenario.”
“In situations like this, the best thing for long-term investors is to figure out what they want longer term,” he added.
White House Models Predict COVID-19 May Kill Up to 240,000 Americans
Wednesday’s closing figures come just one day after it was revealed at a Tuesday White House briefing by the Coronavirus Task Force that the deadly respiratory disease could claim between 100,000 and 240,000 American lives - even with mitigation measures in effect.
It’s worth noting that US models also projected that had measures such as social distancing and stay-at-home orders not been implemented, some 2.2 million Americans would have died as a result.
“We’re slowly peering through the fog and trying to see how bad things will become, but essentially we are flying blind,” Peter Dixon, a senior economist at Commerzbank, told the Wall Street Journal.
“It’s very clear this is going to be the biggest sudden stop in measured history: The economy is just going to hit the buffers.”
At present, the US is leading the world in confirmed COVID-19 cases as more than 200,000 people have tested positive, according to data collected by John Hopkins University. COVID-19 has killed over 4,000 Americans.