Updated Mar 5, 2020 - Economy

Wall Street returns to sell-off mode as coronavirus fears mount

 Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) on March 03, 2020 in New York City

Photo: Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Stocks closed down more than 3% on Thursday, while yields on the benchmark government bond — considered a safe-haven asset — hit new lows.

Why it matters: Market volatility isn't letting up, and fears continue to mount about the coronavirus' impact on the economy and businesses. The S&P 500's biggest decliners Thursday were cruise-lines and airlines — including Royal Caribbean, Carnival and American Airlines.

By the numbers: Thursday's losses erased nearly all of Wednesday's 4% gains. The index is back in correction territory, or 10% below its record high.

  • The best-performing S&P 500 stock on Thursday was Kroger, which said it was benefiting as anxious consumers stockpiled pantry staples, per the Wall Street Journal. Shares rose more than 8%.

Of note: The yield on the U.S. 10-year treasury note hit a record low of 0.898% on Thursday, reflecting investors' fears about the global economy as the coronavirus outbreak spreads.

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