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Photo: Johannes Eisele/AFP via Getty Images

Stocks saw the worst sell-off in months on Friday: the Dow Jones Industrials Average dropped 603 points (2.1%), while the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq declined 1.7% and 1.5%, respectively.

Why it matters: Despite a few jitters, the stock market had until now mostly brushed off fears about the coronavirus (the bond market, though, has not) as stellar earning results from big names like Apple, Microsoft and Amazon took center stage.

The big picture: As the outbreak worsens, so do concerns that it could hit the global economy right as prospects for growth were beginning to look up.

Details: The U.S. Treasury yield curve inverted on Monday and again on Friday, oil prices have fallen more than 10% in the past two weeks and the price of copper, a bellwether of economic health, went on a record 12-day losing streak.

The bottom line: Bond and commodity markets have been clearly signaling distress all week. The inverted yield curve has happened before every U.S. recession in the last 50 years and has shown a false positive only once.

  • Economists at the Federal Reserve call it the "best summary measure" of economic downturn, and yields on the benchmark 10-year Treasury note have fallen by a staggering 38 basis points over the past month.
  • Copper is seen as a barometer of the economy's health because of its use in homebuilding and commercial construction

Go deeper: What's happening with the coronavirus

Go deeper

The risks and rewards of charging state-backed hackers

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Last week’s stunning indictment of three North Korean hackers laid bare both the advantages and drawbacks of the U.S. government’s evolving strategy of using high-profile prosecutions to publicize hostile nation-state cyber activities.

Why it matters: Criminal charges can help the U.S. establish clear norms in a murky and rapidly changing environment, but they may not deter future bad behavior and could even invite retaliation against U.S. intelligence officials.

31 mins ago - World

Scoop: Netanyahu asked Biden to keep Trump's sanctions on International Criminal Court

ICC chief prosecutor Fatou Bensouda. Photo: Bas Czerwinski/ANP/AFP via Getty

Netanyahu asked Biden in their first phone call last week to keep sanctions imposed by the Trump administration on the International Criminal Court (ICC) in place, Israeli officials tell me.

Why it matters: Israeli officials are concerned that removing the sanctions would hamper Israel's efforts to stop a potential war crimes investigation into Israel, and that the court's prosecutor could see it as a signal that the U.S. isn't firmly opposed to that investigation.

Updated 1 hour ago - Health

FDA analysis finds Johnson & Johnson COVID vaccine is safe and effective

Photo: Pavlo Gonchar/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

The Food and Drug Administration's staff released a briefing document on Wednesday endorsing Johnson & Johnson's one-shot coronavirus vaccine as safe and effective.

The latest: Assuming the FDA issues an emergency use authorization "without delay," meaning as soon as this weekend, White House coronavirus coordinator Jeff Zients said J&J will have 3 million to 4 million ready for distribution next week.