Updated Mar 11, 2020 - Economy

Stocks sink 4% as Dow closes in bear market

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

Photo: Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Stocks fell more than 4% on Wednesday, with the Dow closing in bear market territory — or 20% below the record high hit in February.

Why it matters: The Dow's steep drop ends one major index's record 11-year stretch without a 20% decline, as Wall Street grapples with just how bad the coronavirus will be for the global economy. The S&P 500 is about 30 points away from hitting bear market territory.

Between the lines: A stretch of market volatility like this — with 2% or more moves almost every trading session in recent weeks — has been rare in the past decade.

  • While central banks around the world are stepping in, it’s unclear what measures — if any — the Trump administration will be able to get through Congress to stem the economic pain.

Editor's note: This story is developing. Please check back for the latest details.

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